Immigration

Pro-immigration activists going to Washington for Supreme Court hearing

The columns and west pediment of the U.S. Supreme Court building are seen in Washington, Tuesday, April 12, 2016.
The columns and west pediment of the U.S. Supreme Court building are seen in Washington, Tuesday, April 12, 2016. AP

Immigrants and pro-immigration activists will board a bus in Miami Sunday and travel overnight to Washington, D.C., where the U.S. Supreme Court will hear arguments Monday about President Barack Obama’s controversial effort to shield from deportation about five million undocumented immigrants.

“We’re going to Washington to be there during Monday’s hearing and show our support so that there is a relief against deportations that are brutally separating families,” said María Rodríguez, executive director of the Florida Immigrant Coalition, one of the groups organizing the trip.

Rodríguez announced the bus trip Wednesday during a news conference in front of the Miami-Dade County government building in downtown Miami. The Miami group will join others from U.S. cities at a large rally on the Supreme Court steps to show support for Obama’s executive actions.

The hearing marks the most important milestone in Obama’s struggle to enact his plan to grant temporary protection from deportation for parents of children who are citizens or legal residents.

Obama announced his executive actions in November 2014. But a month later, Texas and 25 other states — including Florida — sued in federal court against the presidential plan.

In February 2015, a federal judge in Brownsville, Texas, ruled against the executive actions. The Justice Department appealed and the Supreme Court eventually agreed to review the case. A ruling is expected in June.

“I’m going to Washington,” said Jorge Cortes, one of the immigrants who planned to board the bus Sunday, “because we are demanding justice for the rights of millions of families who deserve to enter the system.”

Jacqueline Lopez, another immigrant traveling to Washington, said she wants undocumented immigrants to live in peace.

“We want an opportunity, so we can work and live in peace,” she said. “We do not want to separate from our families and we do not want to live in fear anymore.”

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