The Justice Department is asking a federal judge to dismiss a lawsuit over President Obama's immigration program.
Maricopa County, Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio filed the lawsuit in November, just hours after Mr. Obama announced his new initiative, which temporarily shields around 5 million undocumented immigrants from deportation. Arpaio argues that he will suffer harm from the president's action because it will attract more undocumented immigrants to "his" county, who will then commit crimes and burden "his" law enforcement resources.
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In a filing late Monday, the Justice Department argues that Arpaio's theory is "speculative" and "unsubstantiated." Moreover, they say it is contradicted by the program itself, which aims to increase federal resources for deporting undocumented criminals and people who recently crossed the border.
Mr. Obama's immigration actions have raised the ire of conservatives, who have cast the moves as executive overreach. Before recessing for the year, the Republican-led House of Representatives held a largely symbolic vote to block the president's actions.