Skip to main content

Press Statement on Lawsuit Filed by Diversity Lottery Selectees Against Trump Administration and Department of State

Today, 149 Diversity Lottery selectees from 14 countries, some of whom actually have immigrant visa stamps, have been interviewed prior to be issued visa stamps, or who were waiting for their final interviews sued President Trump, Secretary Pompeo and the Department of State in  Federal Court in Washington, D.C. seeking immediate relief from the Presidential Proclamation of June 22, 2020.  This Proclamation effectively bars the Plaintiffs from immigrating to the United States, contrary to law, and has caused extraordinary hardship in the lives of these future permanent residents of the United States.  Many of these selectees are professionals, doctors, accountants, business people with degrees and expertise America needs.

President Trump acted illegally when he ended the Diversity Lottery 2020 program, something that he has talked about wanting to do for the last four years.  The President does NOT have the authority to interrupt the entire statutory scheme of immigration created by Congress. By acting in this unlawful manner, he violates the Take Care clause of the U.S. Constitution, and he operates outside the boundaries of INA 212(f), which requires specific actions in order to fulfill its requirements, actions the President failed to take.

Secretary Pompeo and the Department of State have also acted in an arbitrary and capricious manner, abused their discretion and violated the Administrative Procedures Act in failing to observe existing rules, policies and regulations that are designed to ensure that Diversity Lottery Applicants are processed for their immigrant visas in the fiscal year in which they are selected, and to maximize the usage of available visa immigrant visa numbers for the fiscal year.

The attorneys representing Plaintiffs are acting in a pro bono capacity to ensure that justice is meted out regardless of the Diversity Lottery selectees’ financial status.  Charles Kuck, Danielle Claffey, and Phillip Kuck of Kuck Baxter Immigration LLC in Atlanta, Georgia are working together with Greg Siskind of Siskind Susser PC in Memphis, Tennessee, and Jeff Joseph and Zachary New of Joseph & Hall PC in Aurora, Colorado and they represent individuals from more than a dozen countries seeking that which the US Government has promised them-the right to enter the United States under the legal and orderly immigration system.

Quote:  “Today, we take a stand against the wholesale destruction of the legal immigration system by this Administration,” said Charles Kuck, counsel for  Plaintiffs. “Good people, who in good faith relied upon the good name of the United States, neither deserve nor should expect to be cast aside at the whim of a President who refuses to obey the law.”

Quote:  “Section 212(f) does not make the President a king, free to ignore Congress and redesign the immigration system as he likes, said Greg Siskind, counsel for Plaintiffs.  “And, it certainly does not give him the power to arbitrarily and permanently change people’s lives for the worse just to advane his political agenda.”

Quote:  “This administration has made its disdain for the Diversity Visa program very clear,” said Jeff Joseph, counsel for Plaintiffs. “The President is well aware that he cannot dismantle this program without an act of Congress.  But this President has equal disdain for the rule of law, so rather than go through Congress, President Trump legislates above the law with Executive Orders.  It is not surprising, then, that so many of these off-the-cuff Executive Orders have been struck down by the Court.  The President cannot and should not do indirectly what he has no authority to do directly.  We are confident that this inane policy will also be rejected outright”

For further information, please contact by phone or twitter:  Charles Kuck at 404-949-8154  @ckuck, Jeff Joseph at (720) 273-4647 @jeffjoseph — @Immigrant_Atty, and Greg Siskind at 901-682-6455  @gsiskind.