South Carolina is joining sixteen other states in suing the Obama Administration over the recently announced executive actions on immigration.
Governor Nikki Haley and Attorney General Alan Wilson announced Wednesday afternoon in Columbia that South Carolina will take part in the lawsuit, which was first filed by Texas.
Haley said South Carolina will not tolerate what it views as the Obama Administration sidestepping the U.S. Constitution. “So what we are now saying back to the president is what you’re not paying attention to is that South Carolina will not stand for this,” Haley said with Wilson at her side during a press conference. “And what you’re not paying attention to is it’s not just South Carolina, there are seventeen states saying no more overstepping the law.”
“This causes great harm to the State of South Carolina,” Haley said.
President Obama announced the executive actions last month to redefine immigration enforcement priorities to focus more on convicted criminals and those who more recently crossed into the country illegally. It would also allow parents of legal U.S. citizens to be shielded from deportation if they have been in the country for at least five years and pass a background check. Many top Republicans have denounced the president’s unilateral move designed to spare as many as 5 million people living illegally in the United States from deportation.
South Carolina joins Alabama, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Kansas, Louisiana, Maine, Mississippi, Montana, Nebraska, North Carolina, South Dakota, Utah, West Virginia and Wisconsin in the lawsuit.
Wilson said the lawsuit is not about immigration policy, but rather upholding the law. “This lawsuit is about the rule of law, it’s about upholding the Constitution.” Wilson did say the lawsuit could have a vast impact on immigration policy.
The lawsuit claims the president violated the “Take Care Clause” of the U.S. Constitution that limits the scope of presidential power (pulled from language requiring that the president “take care that the laws be faithfully executed”). The lawsuit also claims the federal government violated rulemaking procedures required under the Administrative Procedure Act.