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June 2015 Archives

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Supreme Court Overrides Removal for Misdemeanor Drug Charges

On June 1st, the Supreme Court handed down a decision regarding removal procedures for immigrants based on convictions for misdemeanor drug offenses. Tunisian-born Moones Mellouli is a lawful permanent resident in Kansas and had been convicted on charges of drug paraphernalia for possessing a sock to conceal four tablets of the prescription drug Adderall. Immigration officials who had initiated removal proceedings were unable to effectively show the substance in question was controlled by federal law. 

Veto Denying Driver's Licenses to Children of Undocumented Immigrants Overridden

Late May saw the Nebraska legislature meet and surpass the 30 vote minimum to override the governor's veto of legislation which would end the state ban on issuing driver's licenses to children of undocumented immigrants. Governor Pete Ricketts had argued that the bill to allow driver's licenses was so vague as to issue licenses to "any illegal immigrant who has approved deferred action status." This contention was refused by the bill's sponsor Senator Jeremy Nordquist. Governor Ricketts has not lost three consecutive vetoes with the legislature. Read more on this story here: 

Nebraska Legislature Overrides Veto in Repealing Death Penalty

The 40 years of work put in by Omaha Senator Ernie Chambers to repealing the Nebraska death penalty was realized in late May when the state legislature voted to overturn a gubernatorial veto of Sen. Chambers' bill, LB268. While Governor Pete Ricketts and state Attorney General Doug Peterson both expressed considerable disappointment from the veto override, citing the death penalty as necessary for law enforcement to be most effective. The 30 votes exactly needed to override a veto came in, including from potential swing-voter Senator Tyson Larson who reported having a heavy conscience over the matter. 

Nebraska Legislature Overrides Veto in Repealing Death Penalty

A petition by the Obama administration to grant emergency deferments of illegal immigrants and offer them work permits was shot down in a 2-1 vote by a 5 th Circuit Appeals Court on May 26. Texas and 25 other states have filed lawsuits against the administration over the president's executive action to grant an automatic stay for illegal immigrants, calling Obama's move unconstitutional. 5 th Circuit Judge Jerry Smith remarked that Texas would be excessively burdened financially if forced to give driver's licenses to immigrants who were eligible for deportation deferral. 

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