WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court refused Monday to reconsider
President Obama's proposed overhaul of the nation's immigration
system following a tie vote in June that blocked its
The eight-member court's order shut the door on a plan that
already seemed all but dead a few months ago. The court declined
to wait until a ninth justice is confirmed and seated in order
to rehear the case — and possibly reverse its June decision.
The decision was applauded by Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton,
who led a group of states in seeking to invalidate the plan.
"Rewriting national immigration law requires the full and
careful consideration of Congress," he said. "This is the latest
setback to the president’s attempt to expand executive power and
another victory for those who believe in the Constitution’s
separation of powers and the rule of law.”
The high court seldom agrees to rehear cases a second time, but
it has on occasion done so when a justice's death or retirement
leaves a vacancy that leads to a 4-4 tie. In those cases, the
court merely leaves the decision of the lower court intact and
sets no national precedent.
Acting U.S. Solicitor General Ian Gershengorn had told the
justices in July that Obama's effort to protect millions of
undocumented immigrants from deportation and allow them to seek
work permits deserved rehearing so that a divided federal
appeals court didn't get the last word on a national policy.
"The validity of the (immigration policy) is unlikely to arise
in any future case," his petition said. "This court instead
should be the final arbiter of these matters through a