In a turn of events worthy of any courtroom drama on television or in the movies, the lawsuit brought by a group of federal immigration agents against outgoing Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano and the Obama Administration’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals Program has been dismissed.
The lawsuit, highlighted in a previous story here in Being Latino Online Magazine, has been dismissed by U.S. District Court Judge Reed O’Connor of the U.S. Court for the Northern District of Texas in Dallas in a ruling released on July 31st. The judge ruled that while the government may have overstepped its authority to selectively enforce U.S. immigration laws, the claims made by the plaintiffs, federal employees fall under the authority of the Collective Bargaining Agreement between the Plaintiff’s union and the federal government as well as the Civil Service Reform Act of 1978(“CSRA”). In the CSRA, Congress specifically precludes Federal District Court interference in cases where the dispute is a matter of employment relations and discipline within a federal agency. The case was dismissed by the District Court for lack of jurisdiction and without prejudice as to the Plaintiff’s claims.
So, what could have been a major blow to the Obama Administration in its attempt to begin piecemeal immigration reform and to enjoy the continued support of Latino voters has been reduced to a very small footnote and a simple employee grievance matter.