June 23, 2016



Progressive Congress Decries Supreme Court Ruling on DAPA That Leaves Millions of Families in Limbo


Washington, D.C. — On June 23, 2016, the Supreme Court of the United States issued a ruling in United States v. Texas on President Obama’s Deferred Action for Parental Accountability (DAPA) program, resulting in a 4-4 tie that has left millions of families in limbo as they wait to hear whether they will face deportation or separation from their loved ones. Progressive Congress issued the following statement in response to the ruling:

“Progressive Congress is extremely disappointed that the majority of the Court did not recognize that DAPA and DACA are commonsense immigration programs which are lawful, constitutional, and follow precedents set both Republican and Democratic president administrations. These common-sense immigration measures do not jeopardize our ability to enforce immigration laws- they curtail the cruel and unnecessary practice of separation of families from law-abiding citizens and legal residents who do not want lose their mothers, fathers, sons or daughters to deportation.

DAPA offers a humane alternative to deportation- and by deferring action, it also paves the way to potential employment authorization and even temporary legal residency, giving people a second chance to live and work in the country as documented residents. So many of these parents of U.S. citizens and legal residents have been contributing to their American communities for years if not decades- they pay their taxes, give back to their neighborhoods, and share their insights and skills with local area residents. They are part of the immigrant fabric of this country, and they have made the United States their home.

‘How much longer must the American people wait for the Senate to do their job and fill the seat vacated unexpectedly by Justice Antonin Scalia?’ asked Dr. Gabriela Lemus, Executive Director of Progressive Congress. ‘Let’s get real – the lack of a fully functioning Supreme Court means that the U.S. system of checks and balances is increasingly at risk. Their 4-4 stalemate on the case United States v. Texas has put millions of immigrant family lives in jeopardy.  We need a full bench.

Forcing ideology and politics onto the Supreme Court is a big mistake.  Because there is no full bench, the Court now has allowed a single district court judge in Texas’ Fifth Circuit decide on the lives of millions of immigrants and their families. The Senate Majority is flouting its own Constitutional obligations, making communities suffer across the United States.’

We demand the U.S. Senate act swiftly and deliberately to ensure that the Supreme Court of the United States has a full bench with nine Justices. No one in this country should have to remain in limbo because of a split ruling. We need nine Justices not only for the millions of immigrant families who are awaiting their fate, but for every person across the United States who is affected by the outcome of a Supreme Court ruling.”



Progressive Congress is a 501(c)3 organization that amplifies and strengthens connections between change makers in the grassroots Progressive community and lawmakers in Congress. Progressive Congress provides access to innovative, forward-thinking ideas and serves as the vital linkage between message makers on and off the Hill as they shape a progressive agenda.