Federal Judge Maintains DACA is Illegal

(ConservativeJournal.org) – On Wednesday, September 13, a federal judge in Texas, Andrew Hanen, issued a ruling once again declaring the federal government’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program illegal. However, immediate action regarding DACA’s illegality has not been taken, as child immigrants would immediately lose protection.

DACA was initially established in 2012 through a Department of Homeland Security memo during the Obama administration. Since then, it has been embroiled in constant legal battles and political debates. It provides protection for approximately 600,000 young adults and children who ended up in the US without any state status. For the past decade, DACA’s existence has given them the ability to live and work in the US without any threat of deportation.

Judge Hanen had previously called DACA unlawful in 2021, which resulted in a long process of appeals from the program.

In 2022, an appellate court instructed Hanen to reevaluate the program in light of the Biden administration’s efforts to formalize the policy through administrative law, which was the basis for Hanen’s original ruling.

During a hearing in early June, a coalition of predominantly Republican-led states challenging the program argued that the Biden administration’s adjustments to DACA were not substantial, and therefore, DACA remained illegal. These states, led by Texas, also contended that DACA recipients posed an economic burden.

In his recent decision, Hanen stated that the court again considers the program illegal, but they will continue to recognize it insofar as it protects the status of young adults and children. This decision essentially maintains the existing DACA status quo: current recipients can renew their protections, while new applicants are prohibited from applying.

Considering the ruling, most of the young people under the program are grandfathered in. This puts the ones who are still in the program in a strange limbo, as people with the same exact status as them cannot reap the same benefits.

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