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President's Immigration Plan in Limbo

Thursday, 09 April 2015

President Obama's plan to keep immigrants from being deported continues to be blocked by a federal judge in Brownsville.

Judge Andrew Hanen first shot down the president's immigration plan in February. He did it again late Tuesday night. The White House is not happy with the ruling, and neither are some illegal immigrants who are waiting in the wings.

"We're at a point where we're actually not sure what's going to be the next step," said John Michael Torres, with immigration advocacy group La Union del Pueblo Entero.

Illegal immigrants looking for legal status go to Torres' office with questions every day.

"We're still at the point of kind of seeing what's the next step for folks here locally," Torres said.

He said many people are turning to a different judge in their quest for freedom.

"We get a lot of people saying, 'you know, that they're praying that there will be a positive outcome," Torres said.

The future of the president's plan is in the hands of the legal system. Immigration Attorney Lionel Perez explained the case.

"On Feb. 17, they stopped everything. Procedurally, now the government comes back to the judge. 'Please lift your injunction and if you don't, then we're going to appeal on you.' Well, he didn't say anything, so they appealed on him," Perez said.

The case will be heard by the court of appeals on April 17.

"Within the next three weeks, maybe we'll have a decision," Perez said.

Perez says whichever side loses its appeal will take the case to the Supreme Court.

"Whether it's legal or illegal hasn't even been touched. The case, the principal case, the legality of it, still has to go through the district court, then it'll go through the appeals ... it's going to be around for a while," he said.

Torres says the future for millions of illegal immigrants hangs in the balance.

"The average person is really just waiting to figure out what happens," he said.

The case now heads to New Orleans to the court of appeals, before it makes its way to the Supreme Court.

Source: KRGV

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