Federal judge dismisses Texas suit on resettlement of Syrian refugees

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  • A federal judge tossed a suit Thursday seeking to suspend the resettlement of Syrian refugees in Texas
  • The court rejected the challenge

(CNN)A federal judge tossed a suit Thursday brought by Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton seeking to suspend the resettlement of Syrian refugees in Texas.

Texas had argued that the federal government failed to properly consult with the state in accordance with a federal Refugee Act before moving forward with resettlement plans. But on Thursday, the court rejected the challenge holding that the law does not create a right for Texas to bring the suit.
    "Finding no evidence of congressional intent to create a private cause of action to enforce the Refugee Act's provision, the Court declines to imply one here," wrote Judge David C. Godbey of the U.S. District Court of the Northern District of Texas.
    The ruling is a victory for the government as well as the International Rescue committee.
    "This ruling is a strong rebuke of unconstitutional efforts to block refugee resettlement," said Cecillia Wang, director of the ACLU's Immigrants' Rights Project and lead counsel for the International Rescue Committee, "It sends the clear message to other states that such attempts are not only un-American, they are contrary to the law and will fail in court."
    Paxton said he was "disappointed with the court's determination that Texas cannot hold the federal government accountable to consult with us before resettling refugees here."
    "We are considering our options moving forward to guarantee the safety of Texans from domestic and foreign threats," he said in a statement.
    The lawsuit was filed after the IRC announced that it would help resettle refugees in Dallas.
    Paxton said at the time, while "Texans are compassionate to our core," he had significant security concerns about President Barack Obama's plan to admit refuges and the ability to run effective background checks on the refugees.
    The issue has come up on the 2016 presidential campaign trail, with Donald Trump proposing a temporary ban on all Muslims and Hillary Clinton proposing an increase in the number of Syrian refugees the U.S. accepts.