The Trump administration suffered another major blow in their fight against the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program. The Supreme Court’s Monday ruling to allow the latest state level injunction concerning the March 5 deadline to renew DACA eligibility has temporarily halted the President’s attempt to eliminate the Obama era initiative.
The Supreme Court’s decision was in response to Federal District Judge William Alsup of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, who recently ruled to stop DACA’s demise and consequently resume the renewal process. “Plaintiffs have established injury that reaches beyond the geographical bounds of the Northern District of California. The problem affects every state and territory of the United States,” Alsup wrote.
Resolution on this matter could take up to one full year, which could mean that children who came to the U.S. would be safe for the foreseeable future. The Trump administration is spinning this as a betrayal by the left of the population they say they stand behind. In a White House meeting held with multiple governors, Trump shared his take on the ruling, “You know, we tried to get it moved quickly ’cause we’d like to help DACA. I think everybody in this room wants to help with DACA, but the Supreme Court just ruled that it has to go through the normal channels, so it’s going back in. It’s a very, very sad thing. So DACA’s going back, and we’ll see what happens from there.”
Some of Trump’s biggest opponents to the DACA dismantling, like New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, see the appeal as a small victory, but realize that a permanent resolution for Dreamers is the ultimate task at hand.
A sharp contrast to Schneiderman’s, and other’s, optimism to the extended timetable allowed to mend the initiative is White House spokesman Raj Shah’s apparent disappointment: “The DACA program — which provides work permits and myriad government benefits to illegal immigrants en masse — is clearly unlawful. The district judge’s decision to unilaterally re-impose a program that Congress had explicitly and repeatedly rejected is a usurpation of legislative authority. The fact that this occurs at a time when elected representatives in Congress are actively debating this policy only underscores that the district judge has unwisely intervened in the legislative process.”
Justice Department spokesman Devin O’Malley has stated that despite the Supreme Court’s ruling and the “uphill climb” facing the President’s DACA plans in the 9th District Court, the Department of Homeland Security will continue to “wind down DACA in an orderly manner.”
Whether the decision by Alsup is seen as a victory or an abuse of power, the underlying tone of his decision is to prolong discussions on a program that affects over 700,000 people in our country. Although talks continue within the chambers of Senate concerning Dreamers, what was the guarantee that negotiations would proceed, once the March 5 deadline had come and passed The answer to that question will have to wait until our justice system decides.