Skip to main content

Why DAPA Violates APA

USSupremeCourtWestFacade.JPG

The Supreme Court, earlier this term extended the time that would normally have been slated for arguments on the immigration case this term, US v. Texas. This Monday, it heard those arguments.

Some background: the Obama administration has sought to implement a program it calls Deferred Action for Parents of Americans (DAPA), effectively allowing people in the US illegally to remain here, work lawfully, and receive other benefits that would otherwise be withheld from them by law.

One of the arguments against DAPA is that it violates APA. Also, that's the only argument that employs rhyming acronyms, so it is presumably the important one. APA is the Administrative Procedure Act, and it created notice and comment procedures for new administrative rules. Opponents of the Obama policy contend that DAPA is a new rule within the scope of APA, yet it was initiated without the proper notice-and-comment period, thus it is invalid.

Apparently it is the Secretary of Homeland Security who should issue the notice and receive the comments if any one should.

Legal scholars Ronald Cass and Christopher Demuth prepared a well-written amici brief making the case for a ruling against the administration on APA grounds.

The key point? DAPA goes beyond simply declining to prosecute, and changes the legal status of certain individuals, thus rendering APA applicable.


The grant of a license differs from an exercise of enforcement discretion because a license, by its
nature, changes the legal rights and obligations of the individual to whom the license is granted. When executive officials exercise discretion not to enforce the law in particular cases, the unprosecuted  remains a lawbreaker in the eyes of the law. In contrast, the grant of a license affirmatively authorizes the license holder to engage in conduct that would otherwise be unlawful. In the eyes of the law, the conduct is permitted, not just unprosecuted.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

England as a Raft?

In a lecture delivered in 1880, William James asked rhetorically, "Would England ... be the drifting raft she is now in European affairs if a Frederic the Great had inherited her throne instead of a Victoria, and if Messrs Bentham, Mill, Cobden, and Bright had all been born in Prussia?"

Beneath that, in a collection of such lectures later published under James' direction, was placed the footnote, "The reader will remember when this was written."

The suggestion of the bit about Bentham, Mill, etc. is that the utilitarians as a school helped render England ineffective as a European power, a drifting raft.

The footnote was added in 1897. So either James is suggesting that the baleful influence of Bentham, Mill etc wore off in the meantime or that he had over-estimated it.

Let's unpack this a bit.  What was happening in the period before 1880 that made England seem a drifting raft in European affairs, to a friendly though foreign observer (to the older brother…

Cancer Breakthrough

Hopeful news in recent days about an old and dear desideratum: a cure for cancer. Or at least for a cancer, and a nasty one at that.

The news comes about because investors in GlaxoSmithKline are greedy for profits, and has already inspired a bit of deregulation to boot. 

The FDA has paved the road for a speedy review of a new BCMA drug for multiple myeloma, essentially cancer of the bone marrow. This means that the US govt has removed some of the hurdles that would otherwise (by decision of the same govt) face a company trying to proceed with these trials expeditiously. 

This has been done because the Phase I clinical trial results have been very promising. The report I've seen indicates that details of these results will be shared with the world on Dec. 11 at the annual meeting of the American Society of Hematology. 

The European Medicines Agency has also given priority treatment to the drug in question. 

GSK's website identifies the drug at issue as "GSK2857916," althou…

Francesco Orsi

I thought briefly that I had found a contemporary philosopher whose views on ethics and meta-ethics checked all four key boxes. An ally all down the line.

The four, as regular readers of this blog may remember, are: cognitivism, intuitionism, consequentialism, pluralism. These represent the views that, respectively: some ethical judgments constitute knowledge; one important source for this knowledge consists of quasi-sensory non-inferential primary recognitions ("intuitions"); the right is logically dependent upon the good; and there exists an irreducible plurality of good.

Francesco Orsi seemed to believe all of these propositions. Here's his website and a link to one relevant paper:

https://sites.google.com/site/francescoorsi1/

https://jhaponline.org/jhap/article/view/3

What was better: Orsi is a young man. Born in 1980. A damned child! Has no memories of the age of disco!

So I emailed him asking if I was right that he believed all of those things. His answer: three out of …