In a major setback for the immigrant rights movement, a divided Supreme Court has blocked President Obama’s plan to shield as many as 5 million undocumented immigrants from deportation. On Thursday, the court returned a 4-4 ruling, leaving in place a lower court decision that Obama had overstepped his authority. The case concerned Obama’s Deferred Action for Parents of Americans program, or DAPA, which would have shielded millions of immigrants with US citizen or permanent resident children from deportation. It also affects Obama’s attempt to expand the existing Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, or DACA, which since 2012 has protected immigrants brought to the United States as children. The ruling is likely to further amplify the role of immigration in the 2016 presidential election. We speak with Thomas Saenz, president of the Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund, who was one of four attorneys to argue the immigration case before the Supreme Court.
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