Friday, March 20, 2015
It appears that the saga of Texas v. United States, the case in which the state of Texas and 25 other states are challenging the lawfulness of President Obama's expanded deferred action program, will be a long and contentious one.
Yesterday, federal District Court Judge Andrew Hanen suggested that he could order sanctions against the Justice Department if he rules it misled him about when the administration began implementing one of the measures. Judge Hanen went back and forth with the Justice Department over whether it had mislead him into believing that part of Obama's program would not be implemented before he made a ruling on the preliminary injunction. Federal officials had given more than 108,000 people three-year deferred action under the 2012 Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program (DACA), which originally only permitted relief for two years.
Judge Hanen chided Justice Department attorney Kathleen Hartnett on Thursday for telling him at a January hearing before the injunction was issued that nothing would be happening with regard to expansion of the DACA program. According to news reports, "Hartnett repeatedly apologized to Hanen for any confusion related to how the reprieves and work permits were granted."