Newspaper article The Record (Bergen County, NJ)

Despite Court Setback, Immigration Advocates Stay Hopeful

Newspaper article The Record (Bergen County, NJ)

Despite Court Setback, Immigration Advocates Stay Hopeful

Article excerpt

A federal appeals court ruling this week that blocks President Obama's executive action to protect millions from deportation left several North Jersey advocates and immigrants disappointed Tuesday, but some said they were hopeful that relief would come one day despite the setbacks.

"Right now what we can see is that there is no guarantee of anything,'' said Elias Garcia, who arrived from Guatemala a decade ago and serves as treasurer of MIGUA, a national organization that helps Guatemalan immigrants living in the United States. "Families continue to suffer the consequences of separation and deportations, but we have faith in God that one day something will happen."

Soon after Obama announced earlier this year that his immigration plan was set to launch, Republicans criticized the move as illegal and claimed the president had acted beyond his authority. Several states, led by Texas, challenged the plan in court.

On Monday night, the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans upheld a Texas-based federal judge's injunction that halted the start of the program. On Tuesday, the U.S. Justice Department announced it would appeal the decision to the Supreme Court

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott praised the latest ruling.

"President Obama should abandon his lawless executive amnesty program and start enforcing the law today," Abbott said in a news release.

The immigration plan would have protected unauthorized immigrants who are parents of children who are U.S. citizens and legal permanent residents who as of 2014 had been living in the U.S. for at least five years. It would have expanded an existing program that shields immigrants from deportation who were brought into the country illegally as children.

The Migration Policy Institute, in data released early this year, estimated that of the 528,000 unauthorized immigrants living in the Garden State, 204,000 could be eligible for the deferred action programs. …

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