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Stormy Weather Ahead for Immigration Reform

November 11, 2015
Plain English Version
Senators Ted Cruz (R.) Texas and Marco Rubio (R.) Florida

Senators Ted Cruz (R.) Texas and Marco Rubio (R.) Florida

Republicans spoke about immigration issues during the debate Tuesday. It was a hot topic. It does not look promising for immigration reform efforts. Donald Trump’s views are well known. He wants to send the undocumented Mexicans back to Mexico and build a wall to keep them from re-entering the U.S. He says they can try to re-enter one by one.

Things got a little better for the undocumented. Jeb Bush and John Kasich called for a humane approach that could lead to legal status.

The real battle is between Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz. Both have a chance to win the Republican nomination. A few years ago, Senator Rubio was for immigration reform. Now he is running for the nomination. He has changed his position. He now says the people do not trust the federal government on immigration. Senator Cruz says reform is amnesty. He is opposed to any change.

Both men are appealing to hard-right conservatives in Iowa and New Hampshire. These are the first states to hold primary elections.

By contrast, the likely Democratic candidate is Hillary Clinton. She supports a path to citizenship. Most American voters favor immigration reform.

There is more news. A federal appeals court again blocked President Obama’s new rules on immigration. One of the new rules allowed the undocumented parents of children born in the U.S. to apply for legal status. Another rule increased the number of long-term undocumented residents who could apply for legal status. Legal status means a person can work or go to school and not be in danger of deportation.

The Obama administration said it would appeal the case to the U.S. Supreme Court.

The Supreme Court may or may not hear the case this term. If the court does hear the case, it could be decided before the summer of 2016. If the ruling is favorable to President Obama, his immigration reform could start before he leaves office. The Supreme Court may not take up the case. Or, it can rule against it. That will be the end of President Obama’s immigration reform effort. He leaves office January 2017.

Source: The New York Times November 11, 2015

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