Past Features

March 25, 2015

Executive Amnesty Appeal in June?
5th Circuit may act then
Politco -- March 24, 2015  
Appeals court sets arguments in Obama immigration suit
    A federal appeals court announced Tuesday that it will hold an unusual oral argument session next month on the question of whether to stay a judge's order blocking President Barack Obama from carrying out new immigration executive actions he put forward last year.
    The 5th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals said it will hold two hours of oral argument in New Orleans on April 17. The session is aimed not at the legal merits of the ruling U.S. District Court Judge Andrew Hanen issued last month, but on whether to grant the federal government's motion to put that order on hold while the appeal of his decision goes forward.
    Legal experts described as extraordinary the appeals court's decision to hold a public session focusing on a stay.
    "That's extremely rare," said University of Richmond Law Professor Carl Tobias. "Those are almost always addressed just on the papers and very quickly.....I guess they just see this as such a huge issue beteen states and administration they're giving it full-dress treatment."
    The appeals court also granted the federal government's motion for an expedited appeal in the case that pits the administration against 26 states challenging the legality of Obama's immigration actions. The 5th Circuit set a briefing schedule for the so-called merits appeal that runs through mid-May, pointing to possible oral arguments on that question later that month or in June.
    "The rule of law is at the very heart of our case against President Obama's lawless immigration action," Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton said in a statement responding to the court's announcement. "We are a nation of laws, and we are proud to lead a bipartisan coalition of 26 states fighting this Administration's unilateral and unconstitutional use of executive power. We will vigorously oppose the president's illegal amnesty plan in court."
    A Justice Department spokeswoman declined to comment on the order.

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