Texas’ federal lawsuit against the Obama administration’s executive action on immigration has added four more states, the Associated Press reported Wednesday. Arkansas, Michigan, North Dakota and Oklahoma joined Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott’s lawsuit, adding to the 16 other states that signed on to the suit claiming the executive orders are unconstitutional.
“What we’re suing for is actually the greater harm, and that is harm to the Constitution by empowering the president of the United States to enact legislation on his own without going through Congress,” Abbott said on “Meet the Press” on Sunday. Texas’ outgoing attorney general and soon to be governor said he feared that the executive order that seeks to protect roughly 5 million immigrants from deportation will fuel a wave of undocumented illegal immigrants crossing the border.
Obama has defended his actions, saying he was forced to move forward because Congress couldn’t pass immigration reform. Republicans who said the actions amounted to legislation, which only Congress can make. "We're going to fight this illegal amnesty and we're not going to stop," said Sen. Jeff Sessions, R-Ala., on immigration reform Wednesday.
Abbot’s lawsuit was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas, based in Brownsville. He said the state was uniquely qualified to bring the lawsuit because it borders Mexico and has to deal with thousands of migrants crossing the border, including 68,000 unaccompanied minors from Central America who crossed the border earlier this year, the Los Angeles Times reported. Abbott said Texas has had extensive costs from the immigration issue.
"Texas has come out of pocket to the tune of more than $100 million in law enforcement, education and health care because of what has happened,” he said.
The other states involved in the lawsuit are: Alabama, Arizona, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Kansas, Louisiana, Maine, Mississippi, Montana, Nebraska, North Carolina, South Carolina, South Dakota, Utah, West Virginia and Wisconsin.