Dreamers Are American Protest Sign

A federal court rejected a new version of the policy that has shielded hundreds of thousands of young people from deportation on Wednesday. It once more declared the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program to be illegal.

Recent efforts by the Biden administration to keep the Obama-era program alive and codify it into a federal regulation were ruled unlawful by Judge Andrew Hanen of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas. Hanen, who has previously ruled against DACA, stated in his decision that new applicants would still not be permitted to participate in the program, at least for the time being.

Although sympathetic to the plight of DACA recipients and their families, Hanen noted that the court had previously voiced its doubts over the program’s legitimacy. “Even to fill a void, the Executive Branch cannot usurp the power granted to Congress by the Constitution.”

The Biden administration expressed its “deep disappointment” with the decision in a statement on Wednesday night.

White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said that “during this Administration, hundreds of thousands of DACA recipients have been able to live and work lawfully in our country without fear of deportation.” We disagree with the District Court’s finding that DACA is illegal, as we have consistently argued, and we’ll keep fighting to protect this vital policy from legal attacks.

The seven Republican-leaning states that have filed a lawsuit to stop DACA contend that the enhanced program was administered illegally and amounted to an administrative overreach. They claim that since immigrants who entered the nation illegally were allowed to remain there, they continue to suffer financial damages.

Certain young individuals who were brought to the United States illegally as minors are protected from deportation under the DACA program, which was launched by the Obama administration in 2012.

Judge Hanen found that DACA was illegal in 2021 because it wasn’t developed via the official agency rulemaking procedure.

Last year, in response to ongoing legal challenges, the Biden administration took measures to solidify and safeguard the DACA program and its beneficiaries by releasing the final version of a rule aimed at codifying it.

The Biden administration will almost certainly appeal the decision and experts expect the case to reach the U.S. Supreme Court.


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