The Obama administration is expressing regret to U.S. District Judge Andrew Hanen — the man presiding over 26 states’ court challenge to executive amnesty — for not being entirely forthcoming about the implementation dates associated with the programs, according to reports.
“The Government deeply regrets not only the confusion that these statements created, but that it did not recognize the prospect of confusion earlier,” the Justice Department explains in a court filing late last week, according to the Valley Morning Star. “But the miscommunications were not the product of bad faith, and they do not warrant sanctions or further discovery.”
The “miscommunications” in question involve the revelation that, despite the government’s assertions that the executive amnesty programs — Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents (DAPA) and expanded Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) — would not start before February 18 (DAPA was scheduled to start in May), an aspect did begin before then.
Days before expanded DACA was set to take effect Hanen issued a preliminary injunction on the executive amnesty programs, to stop the implementation from going forward as the case works its way through the courts.
In early March, however, the Justice Department revealed to Hanen that in fact it had already started to implement an aspect of expanded DACA, and had issued more than 100,000 new three-year DACA renewals.
According to the Washington Times, in addition to its brief, the government also turned over documents dealing with the executive amnesty expansion that included communications with the White House.
“We sincerely regret the misunderstanding that the government’s statements inadvertently caused, and hope that this submission fully resolves the issue,” the administration said in its brief,” the Times quoted the briefing.
Friday Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton took issue with the scope of the documents.
“In its most recent filing, not only does the Obama Administration deny the coalition of 26 suing states the opportunity to review documents about how the DOJ misrepresented the early implementation of its executive amnesty program, it also suggests that the judge himself should not review those documents,” he said in a statement.
“Regardless, we will continue to fight for the rule of law by asking the district court to carefully review the administration’s withheld documents and hold the DOJ accountable so they provide reliable information about this case, both to the court and to the states,” he added.
Texas is leading the coalition of 26 states, which include Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Kansas, Louisiana, Maine, Michigan, Mississippi, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Utah, West Virginia and Wisconsin.