Almost immediately, a group of 17 states, later joined by 9 others, filed suit in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas. On February 16, 2015, the Court granted the states a preliminary injunction, enjoining DAPA. This injunction will remain in place until a higher court overturns it, or until a trial is held. The injunction is now before the United States Supreme Court.
The basis of the injunction is that the Administration violated the Administrative Procedure Act by not providing notice and an opportunity to comment before issuing DAPA. The Judge did not find that DAPA was an unconstitutional exercise of Presidential power.
The lawsuit itself is probably doomed. Since 1956, every U.S. President has granted temporary immigration relief to one or more groups in need of assistance. The Supreme Court has repeatedly held that this is well within the President’s authority. So, the suit appears to be nothing more than a political stunt.
However, it appears to this attorney and law professor that the Administration is performing a political stunt of its own. Why not go through the notice and comment requirements that concerned the Court, then move to set aside the injunction?
To find the answer, look at the record. This President did nothing in 2009 when he had a clear opportunity to urge Congress to propose and pass Comprehensive Immigration Reform. This President has declared Central American Women and Children fleeing their homelands to be a “threat to national security.” This President has deported more people than any other administration in history.
Don’t hold your breath for DAPA. Maybe the acronym should stand for Dead on Account of Presidential Apathy.