Kris Kobach, architect of Arizona’s controversial immigration measure, as well as similar ones in other states, says he is confident that by January courts will declare Obama administration’s program for suspending deportation for some undocumented immigrants a violation of federal law.
Kobach told Fox News Latino that the debate between President Obama and his Republican challenger, Mitt Romney, over the president’s program -which Romney said he will end if he assumes the presidency in January– likely will be “a moot issue by the time he takes office.”
The lawsuit, in which Kobach is a lead attorney, was filed in August in federal court in Dallas on behalf of 10 U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) employees. It contends that DACA violates federal law and forces ICE employees to break the law by not arresting certain undocumented immigrants. Kobach, who described himself in the interview as “an informal adviser” to the Romney campaign on immigration matters, made his comments Wednesday as Mississippi became the first state to join his lawsuit against the president’s program, known as Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA.
“States must protect their borders while the federal government continues to ignore this growing problem,” said Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant in a news release. “I believe this action by the Obama administration is unconstitutional and circumvents Congress’ authority.”
“The fact remains that illegal immigration is a real issue with real consequences, and ignoring the rule of law is irresponsible,” said Bryant, a Republican. “As governor, I cannot turn a blind eye to the problem of illegal immigration and its costs to Mississippi.”
Supporters of DACA assailed Kobach and the lawsuit. They said that DACA applicants are not criminals, but people who feel an allegiance to the United States, are contributing, and should not be punished for the decisions of adults who brought them here with them illegally.
“Most Americans support the DREAM Act and think legalization is a much more realistic solution than mass deportation, especially for young people who have grown up in the United States,” said Rep. Luis Gutierrez, Illinois Democrat and chairman of the immigration task force for the Congressional Hispanic Caucus. “The President’s policy allows our enforcement agents to concentrate on deporting criminals and others we really don’t want in our country,” he noted. “These are young people brought up in the U.S. who have achieved scholastically and remained crime-free.”