WASHINGTON: The US Supreme Court on Thursday dealt President Barack Obama a harsh defeat, splitting 4-4 over his plan to spare millions of immigrants in the country illegally from deportation and give them work permits, leaving intact a lower-court ruling blocking the plan.
Fate of Obama's immigration plan in hands of US Supreme Court
The court, with four conservative justices and four liberals, appeared divided along ideological lines during oral arguments on April 18 in a case brought by 26 states led by Texas that sued to block Obama's 2014 executive action on immigration that bypassed Congress.
The 4-4 ruling was possible because there are only eight justices following February's death of conservative Antonin.
Ruling 'heartbreaking' for millions: Obama
President Barack Obama condemned the Supreme Court's ruling blocking his bid to change immigration policy as "heartbreaking" and urged Americans not to fear the millions of people who want to make their lives in the United States.
"The fact that the Supreme Court wasn't able to issue a decision today doesn't just set the system back further - it takes us further from the country that we aspire to be," Obama told reporters.
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