In the field of immigration policy and the pursuit of the American dream, the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program has been an important, albeit controversial, player. Recently, a federal judge, US District Judge Andrew Hannon, declared the amended version of DACA invalid “DACA is illegal Announced by the Federal Judge “, sparking a wave of discussions and debates about its future.
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This article takes an in-depth look at the complexities of this decision, the history of the program, and the challenges it faces, giving you a comprehensive understanding of the DACA landscape.
Understanding the DACA Legal Battle
A federal judge’s stance
Judge Hannon’s decision reflected the concerns of Texas and eight other states that were taking legal action to halt the DACA program. In her 40-page decision, Henen expressed sympathy for DACA recipients and their families and said the legality of the program has been in question for some time. He emphasized that the power to address these issues lies with Congress, not the executive or judicial branches.
Importantly, Judge Hannon’s order extended an existing injunction against DACA, preventing approval of new applications but leaving the program intact for existing recipients during the ongoing legal review. Additionally, he rejected states’ requests to end the program within two years while ensuring the protections of current DACA recipients, often referred to as “Dreamers.”
Perspective of advocacy groups
Advocacy groups, such as the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund (MALDEF), have been steadfast in defense of DACA. MALDEF President and General Counsel Thomas Saenz criticized Judge Hannon’s decision, saying it would ultimately fall on higher courts, including the Supreme Court, to determine the legality of DACA and whether Texas can prove harms caused by the program. .
Biden administration’s response
Unsurprisingly, the Biden administration expressed deep disappointment in Judge Hannon’s decision. Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre emphasized her disagreement with the conclusion that DACA is unlawful. They are committed to defending the policy against legal challenges while processing the renewals for current DACA recipients. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) also remained open to accepting new DACA applications in accordance with the court order.
Origins of the DACA program
A controversial start
The roots of the DACA program begin in 2012 when it was created during the Obama administration. However, critics argue that the administration did not have the authority to establish the program, arguing that it bypassed Congress.
Legal challenges over the years
Legal challenges have been a recurring theme in the history of DACA. In 2016, the Supreme Court faced an impasse over expanded DACA and a version for parents of DACA recipients. In 2020, the high court ruled in favor of preserving DACA, saying the Trump administration had made an unreasonable attempt to end it.
The year 2021 saw Judge Henen’s initial declaration that the program was illegal, citing the lack of a public notice and comment period required under the Federal Administrative Procedure Act. The Biden administration aimed to address these concerns with a revised version of DACA, set to take effect in October 2022, subject to public comments in a formal rule-making process. Despite these efforts, Judge Hannon ruled that the updated version was still illegal, claiming that it too closely resembled the original program.
Arguments and counter arguments
States’ claims and costs
The states involved in the lawsuit, which include Texas, Alabama and Arkansas, have argued that immigrants living in the country illegally cause them significant costs, amounting to millions of dollars. They argue that these costs are directly tied to DACA recipients. Collective states claim that health care, education and other expenses have put a strain on their resources.
Protect the program
On the opposing side, the federal government, MALDEF, and the State of New Jersey argue that the state has failed to provide solid evidence to link its alleged costs to DACA recipients. They also claim that Congress has given the Department of Homeland Security the legal authority to establish immigration enforcement policies.
Current Status of DACA
As of March, about 578,680 people were enrolled in DACA, according to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services. With its future hanging in the balance amid ongoing legal battles, DACA remains a serious issue impacting the lives of countless individuals.
Call for action by Congress
President Joe Biden and advocacy groups have consistently called on Congress to pass permanent protections for Dreamers. Despite numerous efforts, Congress has yet to pass proposals like the DREAM Act, which would protect DACA recipients and provide a path to legal status.
Veronica Garcia, an attorney with the Immigrant Legal Resource Center, echoes this sentiment, urging Congress