More than 2 million illegal immigrants will be approved for President Obama’s deportation amnesty over the next few years, and they will be eligible to collect Social Security and Medicare benefits as well as claim a special tax break for low-income families, the Congressional Budget Office said in an analysis Thursday.
The estimate was released as the administration defended the law in a federal court in Texas on Thursday, asking a judge to reject a request by Texas and two dozen other states to halt the program even before it gets started.
Judge Andrew S. Hanen, sitting in Brownsville, said he won’t rule before the end of the month. Applications for the first part of the amnesty are scheduled to begin in the middle of February.
Texas and its allies argue that Mr. Obama overstepped his legal bounds in November when he announced a program to halt deportations for illegal immigrant parents who have legal resident or U.S. citizen children, and to expand a 2012 amnesty for illegal immigrants who were brought to the U.S. as children.
To win, the states first must prove that they were injured by the amnesty, which would give them “standing” to sue. Then they must prove that Mr. Obama’s actions are either unconstitutional because they try to rewrite the laws, which is Congress’ job, or else they are official policies that should have been submitted to the public for comment and revisions before they were enacted.
Mexican officials, hoping to help their citizens stay in the U.S., began issuing birth certificates at consulates Thursday.