Earlier in May, U.S. District Judge Andrew Hanen, based in Texas, placed sanctions on the Obama administrations Department of Justice lawyers, requiring them to take ethics classes, as well as to provide names and addresses of tens of thousands of illegal immigrants allowed in through Obama’s “Dreamer” executive order.
Hanen noted what he saw as deliberate deception, on the part of the Justice Department attorneys.
“In a stern order this month, Hanen determined that Justice Department lawyers were intentionally deceptive when they discussed in court how many work permits had been issued under Obama’s November 2014 immigration directive — calling the alleged misconduct ‘intentional, serious and material.’
Hanen is taking issue with more than 100,000 work permits that were issued for young undocumented immigrants between November 2014 and February 2015, when he issued his injunction that put Obama’s entire executive actions on hold. Those permits — part of an expansion of a 2012 program for young undocumented immigrants, called Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals — were issued for three years, in line with Obama’s 2014 directive. The administration stopped issuing those three-year permits once Hanen issued his injunction, and worked to retrieve documents that were mistakenly issued after the order.”
The point of contention is that the DOJ lawyers covered up the fact that permits were being issued already in November 2014, when the administration’s executive action was not set to go into effect until February 2015.
On Tuesday morning, the Justice Department filed a stay motion, seeking to halt the sanctions from Judge Hanen.
“In a statement, Justice spokesman Patrick Rodenbush dismissed Hanen’s view that administration attorneys acted in bad faith, and argued that the judge’s order ‘intrudes on core executive branch functions.’ Other Obama administration officials warned that the order would have a ‘chilling effect’ on immigrants trying to register with the federal government.
‘The Department emphatically disagrees with the sanctions orders and will seek review of this matter in the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals,’ Rodenbush said in a statement. Stay requests such as the one filed Tuesday are often a precursor to a move asking an appeals court to step in and halt a judge’s actions.”
The director of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services went on record in court documents to say that Hanen’s sanctions were a breach of the agency’s ability to protect the sensitive information of those immigrants who seek out the department’s help.
“Hanen asked for personal information only for immigrants who improperly had three-year work permits for a time and were living in one of the 26 states suing the Obama administration over Obama’s executive actions. That amounts to about 50,000 people, according to USCIS.”
The 26 states suing the Obama administration over his executive action on immigration are: Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Kansas, Louisiana, Maine, Michigan, Mississippi, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, West Virginia, and Wisconsin.