File photo of U.S. President Barack Obama signing into law S. 337: FOIA Improvement Act of 2016 and S. 2328: Puerto Rico Oversight, Management and Economic Stability Act at the Oval Office of the White House in Washington

Fate of Obama legacy initiatives in hands of courts, successor

File photo of U.S. President Barack Obama signing into law S. 337: FOIA Improvement Act of 2016 and S. 2328: Puerto Rico Oversight, Management and Economic Stability Act at the Oval Office of the White House in WashingtonBy Lawrence Hurley WASHINGTON (Reuters) – When President Barack Obama leaves office on Jan. 20 after eight years, several of his major initiatives will still hang in the legal balance, meaning the U.S. courts and his successor will play a major role in shaping his legacy. Ongoing legal challenges by Republican-governed states and business groups are targeting Obama’s signature healthcare law, his plan to combat climate change, a key immigration initiative, his transgender rights policy, his “net neutrality” internet rules, overtime pay for workers and other matters. Most of the cases are awaiting rulings by trial judges or regional federal appeals courts and could be bound for the U.S. Supreme Court, but are unlikely to get there until after the winner of Tuesday’s election, pitting Democrat Hillary Clinton against Republican Donald Trump, is sworn in.

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