Federal Judge Rules DACA Illegal

Obama-era Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program protects around 650K people
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Jul 17, 2021 6:30 AM CDT
Federal Judge Rules DACA Illegal
Immigrant youth and advocates rally to the office of Attorney General Ken Paxton on the day of the Supreme Court's hearing on DACA   (Lola Gomez/Austin American-Statesman via AP, File)

Immigration advocates are raising the alarm after US District Judge Andrew Hanen declared the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program illegal, barring the government from approving any new applications, but leaving the program intact for existing recipients. Hanen ruled in favor of Texas and eight other conservative states that sued to halt DACA, which provides limited protections to about 650,000 people. The program has faced a roller coaster of court challenges since former President Barack Obama instituted it in June 2012. The Trump administration announced it was ending the program in September 2017, but the Supreme Court ruled in 2020 that the administration hadn't ended the program properly, keeping it alive once more, per the AP.

Nancy Pelosi, in a statement Friday evening, vowed that Democrats will continue to push for passage of the DREAM Act. In Friday's ruling, Hanen wrote that the states proved “the hardship that the continued operation of DACA has inflicted on them.” He continued: “Furthermore, the government has no legitimate interest in the continuation of an illegally implemented program.” Biden has already proposed legislation that would provide a pathway to citizenship for the estimated 11 million people living in the US without authorization. He also ordered agencies to make efforts to preserve the program. Supporters of DACA, including those who argued before Hanen to save it, have said a law passed by Congress is necessary to provide permanent relief. Read the full story.
(Read more DACA stories.)

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