The fence marking the border between Mexico and the United States is seen in the Anapra neighborhood of Ciudad Juarez, May 23, 2014.
Jose Luis Gonzalez / Courtesy Reuters

With the Republican takeover of Congress clouding the prospects for swift immigration reform, U.S. President Barack Obama is poised to issue an executive order that will provide temporary reprieve for five million undocumented immigrants, removing the threat of deportation and authorizing work permits for many of them. Among likely measures in the order are an extension of the cutoff date from June 2007 to January 1, 2010, for eligibility to stay in the United States under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals and the provision of safe harbor for the parents of children who are American citizens or legal residents. The first initiative could help a million people and the second between 2.5 million and 3.3 million people. Obama is also reportedly prepared to provide thousands of new visas for high-tech workers, to redeploy immigration enforcement officers and resources from the nation’s interior to the border, to revise the controversial Secure Communities enforcement

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  • LAUREN CARASIK is Clinical Professor of Law and Director of the International Human Rights Clinic at Western New England University School of Law.
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