A federal appeals court on Tuesday declined to let the Obama administration proceed with its plan to defer deportations for millions of undocumented immigrants

The White House condemned the appeal court’s ruling on Tuesday, repeating its position that the president was within his authority and noting that 15 other largely Democratic states, along with the District of Columbia, have sided with the administration in the case.

“Today, two judges of the Fifth Circuit chose to misinterpret the facts and the law in denying the government’s request for a stay,” said Brandi Hoffine, a White House spokesperson. The president’s immigration moves, she added, “are squarely within the bounds of his authority, and they are the right thing to do for the country.”…

In its 2-1 ruling, the Fifth Circuit panel concurred with the states, concluding that the immigration program allowed a broad class of illegal immigrants to be eligible for state and federal benefits.

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In an opinion joined by Judge Jennifer Elrod, Smith sounded sympathetic to claims that Obama’s actions exceeded the authority given to the president and the executive branch by Congress.

“Although the Secretary [of Homeland Security] is given discretion to make immigration decisions based on humanitarian concerns, that discretion is authorized for particular family members and forms of relief,” Smith wrote. “Congress has developed an intricate process for unlawfully present aliens to reside lawfully….in the United States on account of their child’s citizenship…..Against that background, we would expect to find an explicit delegation of authority to implement [Deferred Action for Parents of Americans] — a program that makes 4.3 million otherwise removable aliens eligible for lawful presence, work authorization, and associated benefits — but no such provision exists.”

Smith also said the federal government had failed to show that Hanen erred when he concluded that the new program amounted to a formal rule that should have been put through formal notice-and-comment procedures. The Obama administration claims that the policy involves the exercise of case-by-case discretion, but the appeals court found the evidence on that point to be conflicting and said Hanen’s conclusion wasn’t “clearly erroneous.”

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It’s a cat-and-mouse game, and the mouse is still winning. In spite of the best efforts of our Border Patrol agents, drugs and humans keep coming across our border with Mexico.

I recently returned from my seventh trip to the border. Our Border Patrol agents are trying to do their job, but they are being hampered by bureaucrats and “open border” initiatives put in place by President Barack Obama’s administration…

So, how many get through? Chris Cabrera, vice president of National Border Patrol Council #3307, estimates in a recent video that only 30 percent of illegal aliens coming across the border are apprehended

[C]artels operate 24/7 while the Border Patrol, with shift changes, have gaps in their coverage. Border Patrol agents are further hampered by the Obama administration’s “open border” policy, such as the acceptance of the tens of thousands of unaccompanied alien children last year; the suspension of the Secure Communities program in November 2014, the use of “prosecutorial discretion,” and the sharp decline in Interior Deportations from 236,000 in 2009 to 102,000 in 2014.

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Less than a decade ago, six Mexicans migrated to the United States for every Indian or Chinese. But as Mexico has prospered, immigration has dropped. Meanwhile, as India and China have gotten richer, the number of Indians and Chinese living abroad has doubled.

Some of the Asian immigrants are quite wealthy. According to the China International Immigration Report, among Chinese with assets of more than $16 million, 27 percent had emigrated abroad and an additional 47 percent were considering such a move. The real estate website Soufun.net surveyed 5,000 people and found that 41 percent of such people were drawn to move abroad for better living conditions, 35 percent for better educational opportunities for their children and 15 percent for better retirement conditions…

[G]lobalization, with all its stresses and strains, has created a large international class of middle-class dreamers: university graduates who can’t fulfill their aspirations at home and who would enrich whatever nation is lucky enough to have them.

In this context, Hillary Clinton’s daring approach to immigration, supporting a “path to citizenship” for undocumented immigrants already in the United States, is clearly the right one. The Republican Party is insane if its conducts a 21st-century immigration policy based on stereotypes from the 1980s.

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Coulter’s politically quixotic prescription: a 10-year moratorium on all legal immigration; a complete dismantling of the immigration bureaucracy, not only government agencies and sympathetic elected officials but also outside advocacy groups; the erection of an impassable fence along the entire U.S.-Mexican border (in her book, she praises the Communist East Germans for effectively, sometimes lethally, preventing their citizens from breaching the Berlin Wall); and a return to pre-1965 policies that give preference to highly educated, usually white Europeans. 

“I wouldn’t care if they were white or not; I’m talking about peasants who come from backward cultures,” she says, although she expresses alarm at predictions that by 2050 Caucasians in this country will be a minority. “There are white people from backward cultures. They just don’t happen to come from a country contiguous to the United States. It’s backward cultures that are providing cheap labor and Democratic votes.” (Coulter, however, is unfailingly friendly to our waiter, who identifies himself as “Luis,” an immigrant from Ecuador who came here 10 years ago and is working his way toward U.S. citizenship.)

Coulter argues that U.S. immigration policies were demonstrably better a hundred years ago. “There was no mollycoddling of immigrants back then. With the Irish and the Italians, and even the Germans—especially the Germans—we were allowed to boss them around,” she says. “We could say, ‘No. No. You can’t do this anymore. You are an American now. Knock it off!’ The only problem with the fact that they [recent immigrants] are brown—well, you’re saying they’re brown, I’m saying they’re peasants—is that they’re piggy-backing on the black experience, and saying ‘That’s racist’ if you tell them to do things our way, and ‘You can just assimilate to us,’ not the other way around.

“Can you imagine the Irish or Italians or Germans saying that to our country back at the turn of the century? ‘No! Fuck you! You came to our country. Learn our ways!’”

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But the important thing to remember is that none of this says anything one way or another about the constitutionality of the executive action itself (which, as I’ve argued before, is constitutional.)

It will take a while before the courts offer a final verdict on that question. But the problem for the administration —and the immigrants caught in the legal wrangling – is that time is running out. The president has only another year and a half in office and even if he finally wins in court, it might not leave him enough time to implement the program — which would make it a lot easier for a Republican president to undo it.

And that’s why Latinos will come out in droves to vote for Hillary Clinton, which is why she has engaged in her epic flip-flop and decided that she is whole-heartedly for amnesty after being whole-heartedly against it.

In other words, even if restrictionists win the battle by running out the clock on the executive action, they might lose the war for the White House. Meanwhile, the fate of millions of Latinos will hang in the balance simply because they had the misfortune of being born on the wrong side of the border – unlike the Americans whose McMansions they build, lawns they mow and children they raise.

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