WASHINGTON – The U.S. Supreme Court Thursday ruled the Trump administration cannot rescind Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals or, DACA, a program which provides protection from deportation for at least 650,000 children of immigrants living in the United States.
Conservative Chief Justice John G. Roberts joined the court’s four liberals in the 5-4 ruling. It is viewed as defeat for U.S. President Donald Trump who has sought to roll back DACA for the past two years.
The program was created in 2012 by then President Barack Obama to supply protections for qualified young immigrants to stay in the country and work or attend school. The program became part of what became known as “The Dream Act” and the young immigrants themselves, “dreamers.”
In his decision for the majority, Roberts found, as lower courts had, that the administration did not follow procedures required by law and did not properly weigh how ending the program would affect those who had come to rely on its protections against deportation, and the ability to work legally.
Roberts wrote “We do not decide if DACA or its rescission are sound policies. We address only whether the agency complied with the procedural requirement that it supply reasoned explanation for its action.”
Among those who dissented was Justice Clarence Thomas who wrote that DACA was illegal from the moment it was created.
“Today’s decision must be recognized for what it is: an effort to avoid a politically controversial but legally correct decision,” Thomas wrote.
Thursday’s ruling was the second time in two years that Roberts and the liberal justices faulted the administration for the way it went about a policy change regarding immigration. Last year, the court forced the administration to back off a citizenship question on the 2020 census.
Trump slams decision
President Trump, on Twitter Thursday, criticized what he called “horrible and politically charged decisions coming out of the Supreme Court” that are “shotgun blasts into the face of people that are proud to call themselves Republicans or Conservatives.”
These horrible & politically charged decisions coming out of the Supreme Court are shotgun blasts into the face of people that are proud to call themselves Republicans or Conservatives. We need more Justices or we will lose our 2nd. Amendment & everything else. Vote Trump 2020!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 18, 2020
The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) praised the Supreme Court ruling on DACA.
“The Supreme Court rightly ruled in favor of over 700,000 citizens in waiting, their families, and our country’s future. The courts and the American people agree: It’s time for President Trump and (advisor) Stephen Miller to end their crusade against Dreamers and immigrants writ large,” Andrea Flores, the ACLU’s deputy director of immigration policy said in a statement.
Obama praises ruling
From his Twitter account Thursday, former President Obama praised the ruling, saying “Eight years ago this week, we protected young people who were raised as part of our American family from deportation. Today, I’m happy for them, their families, and all of us. We may look different and come from everywhere, but what makes us American are our shared ideals…”
Eight years ago this week, we protected young people who were raised as part of our American family from deportation. Today, I’m happy for them, their families, and all of us. We may look different and come from everywhere, but what makes us American are our shared ideals…
— Barack Obama (@BarackObama) June 18, 2020