(National Sentinel) Judicial Activism: A federal judge has issued a temporary order barring President Donald J. Trump from ending a policy enacted by President Obama that shields illegal aliens brought to the U.S. as minors from being deported.
The policy known as Deferred Action on Childhood Arrivals, or DACA, was initiated via executive order by Obama in June 2012. At the time it was heavily criticized by Republicans and a number of state attorneys general as an unconstitutional move by the Executive Branch to unilaterally change immigration law.
The policy was rescinded by Trump in September. At the time, he gave Congress six months to come up with a legislative fix. Lawmakers are currently working on that legislation.
But several Democrat-run states sued the administration over its lifting of DACA, and on Tuesday, U.S. District Judge William Alsup in San Francisco, part of the oft-overturned Ninth Circuit, blocked the order.
In his order, Alsup, who was appointed by President Bill Clinton, ruled the program must remain in place while the litigation is resolved.
Justice Department officials vowed to appeal.
“Today’s order doesn’t change the Department of Justice’s position on the facts,” said the department’s spokesman Devin M. O’Malley. The department “will continue to vigorously defend this position,” he said, as reported by Reuters.
In his ruling Alsup said the government would not be required to process new DACA applications but would be barred for now from moving to deport the more than 700,000 DACA recipients currently covered by the Obama policy. And he ordered the administration to continue processing renewal applications from current DACA recipients.
“DACA gave them a more tolerable set of choices, including joining the mainstream workforce,” Alsup wrote. “Now, absent an injunction, they will slide back to the pre-DACA era and associated hardship.”
He added that the plaintiffs were likely to succeed in arguing that the Trump administration’s decision to end the program was arbitrary.
Opponents of the ruling disagreed, saying that regardless of how DACA recipients got into the country — most were brought in by parents when they were young after sneaking across the U.S. border — they are still here illegally. And they argued that Obama never had the authority to issue the executive order shielding them from deportation in the first place.
Others predicted that Alsup’s ruling will be short-lived.
Roy Beck, president of Numbers USA, which supports tougher immigration laws, dismissed the significance of the court’s action, calling it “an aberration that surely will not be allowed to stand as it is appealed.”
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