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Court rejects Arpaio challenge to Obama immigration order

Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpiao.  (AP Photo/Matt York)

Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpiao. (AP Photo/Matt York)

A federal appeals court in Washington this morning threw out a challenge by Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio to the Obama administration’s deferred action programs.

Appellate Judge Nina Pillard said Arpaio’s lawsuit is based on the contention that allowing people who arrived in this country illegally as children to remain without fear of deportation will lead to more crime in Maricopa County and burden his officers and jails. But Pillard, writing for the three-judge panel, said the sheriff’s contentions “are unduly speculative” and “rest on chains of supposition and contradict acknowledged realities.”

And without any proof he or his agency will be harmed, Pillard said Arpaio has no right to sue.

An aide to Arpaio referred all calls to his attorney, Larry Klayman, founder and attorney for Freedom Watch Inc. Klayman did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

The lawsuit, filed last year, challenges both the 2012 Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program and the expanded Deferred Action for Parents of Americans. Both programs allow millions of people here illegally both to remain and work.

Arpaio charged that the programs are “unconstitutional abuses of the president’s role in our nation’s constitutional architecture, and exceed the powers of the president within the U.S. Constitution.” And he said even if Congress has granted some power to the president to decide how to enforce immigration laws, these two programs exceed that delegated authority.

But the court never addressed those arguments, saying Arpaio has no legal right to even make them.

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