Friday, August 16, 2019

Five More States File Suit Challenging Trump Administration Public Charge Rule



Patrick McGreevy for the Los Angeles Times reports that California today sued the Trump administration to challenge the lawfulness of the new “public charge” rule.  The lawsuit was filed by California Attorney General Xavier Becerra in federal court.  Other states previouslyfiled suit challenging the new public charge rule.

“This cruel policy would force working parents and families across the nation to forego basic necessities like food, housing and healthcare out of fear. That is simply unacceptable,” Becerra said in a statement.

California is leading the lawsuit, which is also joined by Maine, Oregon and Pennsylvania as well as the District of Columbia.

Governor Gavin Newsom also criticized the federal policy change in a statement: “This latest move by the federal administration to demonize immigrants is personal for us, in a state where half of our children have at least one immigrant parent,” the governor said. “This new rule, designed to create fear in immigrant families, is cruel and threatens our public health. That is not who we are in California, and not who we are as Americans.”

The two state leaders were harshly critical of the president and his administration at a Capitol news conference. “They don’t like immigrants,” Becerra said of the Trump administration. Newsom singled out Trump, adding, “He has a particular problem with brown people, not even immigrants.”

Attorney General Becerra issued this statement announing the lawsuit.  It states as follows:

"In the lawsuit, the Attorneys General argue that the Rule:  

  • Violates the Equal Protection Guarantee of the Fifth Amendment: The Rule will disproportionately block admission of non-white, non-European immigrants from Asia, Latin America, and Africa. It will also prevent higher numbers of immigrants of color from extending their visas or becoming lawful permanent residents, and ultimately create more obstacles in the path to U.S. citizenship.
  • Arbitrary and Capricious: The Rule punishes immigrants for participating in widely used public benefits programs that are designed to mitigate economic inequality and bolster self-sufficiency, particularly among low wage workers. The Rule also fails to adequately assess the costs that increasing the poverty of families and U.S. citizen children will have on the Nation, its states, and communities.
  • Contrary to Law: The Rule is contrary to law, interferes with the states’ rights to protect their residents, and exceeds the Administration’s authority under federal immigration law by circumventing congressional intent."

I believe that this latest suit is the only one that includes a claim of unlawful racial discrimination.


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