Tuesday, May 12, 2015
The latest news in Texas v. United States is that top Republicans in Congress yesterday filed an amici curiae brief on the side of the states challenging President Obama's executive actions on immigration. Texas and 25 other states have challenged the actions, arguing that the president overstepped his executive power. The Republicans, including Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (Ky.) and House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte (Va.), are siding squarely with the states, arguing Obama's executive action "changes the law and sets a new policy, exceeding the executive’s constitutional authority and disrupting the delicate balance of powers." "Congress has created a comprehensive immigration scheme — which expresses its desired policy as to classes of immigrants — but the class identified by the [Homeland Security Department] directive for categorical relief is unsupported by this scheme," the lawmakers wrote in an amicus brief filed with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit. "Instead of setting enforcement priorities," they added, "it created a class-based program that establishes eligibility requirements that, if met, grant unlawful immigrants a renewable lawful presence in the United States and substantive benefits."
The brief was endorsed by 113 Republicans, including Sens. John Cornyn (Texas), the majority whip, Marco Rubio (Florida), Orrin Hatch (Utah) and Ted Cruz (Texas), a 2016 presidential hopeful. In the House, the supporters include Reps. Trey Gowdy (S.C.); Tom Price (Ga.); Michael McCaul (Texas), head of the Homeland Security Committee; and Lamar Smith (R-Texas), the former head of the Judiciary panel.
Here is a full list of the Republican members of Congress who signed on to the amici brief:
United States Senators
Lou Barletta (former Mayor, Hazleton, PA, and supported a tough immigration enforcement law that was struck down as unconstitutional)
Earl L. 'Buddy' Carter
Mike D. Rogers