Wisconsin's Scott Walker Joins Immigration Lawsuit

The lawsuit represents a test for Republican governors considering 2016 White House bids.

RNC 2012

Scott Walker, governor of Wisconsin, speaks at the Republican National Convention (RNC) in Tampa, Florida, U.S., on Tuesday, Aug. 28, 2012

Photograph by Daniel Acker/Bloomberg

Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker, a potential 2016 Republican president candidate, has signed on to a lawsuit that seeks to block President Barack Obama's recently announced unilateral immigration actions.

The lawsuit, filed Wednesday, is being led by Governor-elect Greg Abbott in Texas and includes at least 17 states. It represents a test for Republican governors considering 2016 White House bids who need to balance their efforts to appease the party's base with the risk of appearing anti-immigrant and hurting their prospects with the nation's burgeoning Hispanic and Asian populations.

"The immigration system is broken, but this is an issue that should be addressed through collaborative federal action, not unilateral action by the president," Walker said in a statement. "President Obama’s actions represent a violation of his constitutional duty to faithfully execute the laws and exceed the limits of his administrative powers."

Obama’s order, issued without congressional support, grants quasi-legal status to more than a third of the estimated 11 million undocumented immigrants in the U.S. if they meet certain requirements. 

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