PHOENIX — Arizona is joining a lawsuit that challenges the Obama administration's recently announced executive actions on immigration, Gov. Jan Brewer announced Thursday.
Texas and 16 other states filed the suit Wednesday in federal court in the Southern District of Texas. They argue President Barack Obama's move to spare up to 5 million immigrants from deportation "tramples" key portions of the U.S. Constitution.
Brewer considered several actions before signing onto the Texas-led suit, spokesman Andrew Wilder said.
"Gov. Brewer was reviewing all the state's options to fight Presidents Obama's illegal amnesty for 5 million illegal aliens, one of which was joining this multi-state lawsuit and one of which was Arizona pursing its own legal course of action," Wilder said.
Many top Republicans have denounced Obama's move. But before Wednesday's lawsuit, the only legal action came from Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio, who sued the president the day he announced the action last month.
The suit filed by Texas attorney general and governor-elect Greg Abbott alleges Obama is failing to faithfully execute the laws enacted by Congress by attempting to rewrite immigration laws. The suit also said the action will cost states money because it will worsen the humanitarian crisis along the southwest border.
Brewer called the president's actions reckless and unconstitutional.
"As a border state bearing the brunt of our nation's broken immigration system - a crisis exacerbated by the president's reckless immigration policies and refusal to enforce the law - our state and our citizens have had enough," Brewer said.
White House spokeswoman Brandi Hoffine on Wednesday said the administration actions are legal.
"The Supreme Court and Congress have made clear that federal officials can set priorities in enforcing our immigration laws," she said.