Dems defend Obama's immigration actions in Supreme Court brief

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House and Senate Democrats are coming to the aid of President Obama in the Supreme Court battle over his executive actions on immigration.

Democratic lawmakers were expected to file a brief on Tuesday in support of Obama’s 2014 actions to shield up to 5 million illegal immigrations from deportation.

Speaker Paul RyanPaul RyanDHS chief: 21 states sought help over election hacking concerns Incomes are rising, but don't trust GOP to make it a trend GOP lawmakers slam secret agreement to help lift Iran bank sanctions MORE (R-Wis.) announced last week that the House would vote on a resolution authorizing the filing of an amicus brief to the Supreme Court on the legality of Obama’s executive actions. House Democrats decried the move, saying the GOP-authored brief wouldn't speak for them.

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House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and Senate Minority Leader Harry ReidHarry ReidDHS chief: 21 states sought help over election hacking concerns The missed opportunity of JASTA States urged to bolster election security MORE (D-Nev.) spearheaded the Democratic document, which was signed by a total of 186 House Democrats and 39 Senate Democrats.

“We are confident the Supreme Court will recognize the legality and necessity of the President’s actions to help bring our immigration system back into line with the values and needs of our country,” Pelosi and Reid said in a joint statement.

Texas and 25 other states are challenging the executive actions, which a federal judge put on hold last year.

Ryan did not offer a specific date for the House vote but said it would occur in the coming weeks.

“The president is not permitted to write law — only Congress is. The House will make that very, very clear, and we will do so as an institution on behalf of the American people, on behalf of representative self-government,” Ryan said last week.

The Supreme Court is expected to hear arguments on the case on April 18, with a ruling expected by the end of June.

Yet the fate of Obama’s executive actions might still be in limbo after the Supreme Court issues its ruling in the heat of the presidential campaign. 

The court only has eight justices after Antonin Scalia’s death last month. If it issues a 4-4 ruling, the lower court’s decision to keep the programs on hold will remain in place, or the case may be tried again in the next Supreme Court term.