Supreme Court Stalemate Means Obama’s Immigration Plan Likely DOA

The United States Supreme Court’s inability to break a 4-4 stalemate might have far reaching implications when it comes to the Obama’s plans to to offer some aid to those who would be otherwise deported. President Obama issued an executive order dealing with immigration that soon saw more than 25 states file lawsuits against it. The lower courts had actually issued rulings that left the immigration executive order in limbo, and it now appears the plan is dead since the Supreme Court doesn’t have the votes to overturn the lower court’s ruling.

The one sentence ruling, stating, “The judgment is affirmed by an equally divided Court,” means any attempts by the Obama administration to stave off deportation and change the way the United States handles immigration is likely dead on arrival. With the Senate refusing to hold any sort of confirmation hearings for any judges slated to replace the late Antonin Scalia, it doesn’t appear the Supreme Court is going to do anything other than deadlock on the immigration issue.

CNN reports President Obama spoke at the White House shortly after the Supreme Court ruling came down.

“For more than two decades now our immigration system, everybody acknowledges, has been broken. And the fact that the Supreme Court wasn’t able to issue a decision today doesn’t just set the system back even further, it takes us further from the country that we aspire to be.”

According to immigration experts, the Supreme Court’s ruling, or lack of ruling, will affect more than 4 million undocumented immigrants. Most, or all, of those millions of people had been planning on coming out of the shadows and applying for programs that the Obama administration had laid out for those who couldn’t go through the usual immigration channels. This issue has been one that has drawn both criticism and praise from many of the people running for President this year.

Hillary Clinton took to Twitter shortly after the Supreme Court issued it’s ruling in order to make sure everyone knew she vehemently disagreed with what it meant for those who were hoping to see the executive order take full effect later this year. Her statement, issued Thursday morning said, “Today’s deadlocked decision from the Supreme Court is unacceptable, and show us all just how high the stakes are in this election.”

The Republican side of the campaign, in the form of Donald Trump, was just as adamant that the immigration ruling was a sign of just how important the election was; though, he was quite a bit happier about the ruling. “SC has kept us safe from exec amnesty–for now. But Hillary has pledged to expand it, taking jobs from Hispanic & African-American workers.” Trump tweeted shortly after news broke.

Trump’s tweet might be the most interesting development in the immigration fight, considering he appears to be trying to claim he’s actually looking out for those who would be affected by the immigration ruling. His tweet shows just how important the hispanic vote is going to be this year, and in the election years to come. Republicans are now walking a tightrope of attempting to send millions of people who have lived here for years and hoped for immigration reform back to where they came, while not looking like the villains.

The Obama administration had hoped one of the conservative justices still left on the court, such as Justice Roberts, would feel as though the immigration plan would not have a negative economic effect on the country, according to USA Today. The administration had hoped the Supreme Court would then not feel as though the lower court’s ruling on immigration was one that could be overturned.

[Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images]

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