Briefing Room


Shane pens essay on U.S. v. Texas decision for The Atlantic

June 28, 2016 | Faculty

Professor Peter M. Shane, the Jacob E. Davis and Jacob E. Davis II Chair in Law, wrote an op-ed for The Atlantic this week on U.S. v. Texas, a challenge to the Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents (DAPA) program that went before the Supreme Court. In the piece, he explained, the questions at the heart of the case weren’t a matter of presidential power, but of ordinary administrative law.

“No one should have been confused about ‘whether the president had lawful authority to [promulgate DAPA].’ The president did not—but that’s legally irrelevant. Obama’s legal authority is not at issue in the case. Really. Truly. Not even a little bit. Obama did not take the legally relevant action; Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson did. It’s a program of which he is the legal author and for which he, not the president, is legally accountable. Politically and institutionally, this is a critically important difference,” he wrote.

U.S. v. Texas is a case about ordinary administrative law, not free-floating anxieties surrounding presidential power.”

Read more in The Atlantic here.