Washington State Takes Lead on Immigration

June 2, 2016 10:12 am
by David Jakeman

For Seattle immigration attorneys keeping abreast of legal challenges to President Obama’s immigration orders, it should come as no surprise that Washington State has become a large place of support for Obama’s efforts. One large reason for Washington’s support lies in the large number of undocumented immigrants who work as low-skilled farmers in positions that would otherwise go unfilled.

Washington Attorney General

Washington’s attorney general used this in a recent amicus brief to the Supreme Court’s hearings on the legality of Obama’s 2014 action that suspended the deportation of 4.4 million of undocumented immigrants. Attorney General Bob Ferguson argued that undocumented immigrant workers are the lifeblood of the economy, providing agricultural work that would go unfilled if they were not around.
Ferguson continued that if Obama’s actions were allowed to be enacted, it would be a boon to family stability in Washington and it would also allow for more taxpayers. “Each day that these reforms are delayed harms Washingtonians who seek to emerge from the shadows and live and work legally to support their families,” Ferguson said. Ferguson didn’t just come out in support of Obama; he came out in opposition to the state opposing Obama’s actions, arguing that states opposing the action are seeking a political goal that they were unable to obtain through the democratic process.

Other Participants

It’s not just Washington that is supporting Obama. A number of other states are as well, including California and Oregon.1 Seattle immigration attorneys worth their salt have been watching with a hawk’s eye to see what developments may occur. The recent death of Antonin Scalia makes this Supreme Court case all the more intriguing. It will be fascinating to see what role that change might play in a court that has featured a large number of 5-4 decisions.

Undocumented immigrants throughout the state of Washington are grateful for the attorney general’s actions. Immigrants have faced many challenges throughout the country, and living in limbo has been one of them. Anytime there appears to be movement on immigration issue, some new development stops it in its tracks. Seattle immigration lawyers can only hope that the Supreme Court will bring some clarity to this issue.

1 – http://www.capitalpress.com/Washington/20160310/washington-ag-cites-farm-labor-in-immigration-brief-to-supreme-court

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