The Supreme Court of the United States issued a stunning ruling Thursday morning that put an end to President Trump’s bid to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals Program (DACA).
The Trump administration sought to put an end to legal protections for illegal immigrants that were brought to the US as children which was — at the time — temporarily instituted by former President Barack Obama eight years ago.
This changes everything
In a 5-4 decision split along ideological lines with notorious centrist Chief Justice John Roberts acting as the tiebreaker, the court rejected Trump’s attempt to terminate the program.
In the eight years since being approved, DACA has been responsible for shielding nearly 800,000 illegal immigrants from deportation.
Under DACA, Children of illegal immigrants are allowed to remain in the US if they were under 16 when their parents brought them to the U.S. and if they arrived by 2007. These DACA recipients are widely known as “dreamers.”
The Trump administration attempted to wind down the program in 2017, but was swiftly challenged within lower courts that kept the program alive while the case made it all the way up to the high court.
Roberts wrote in his tie-breaking opinion that the federal government has the ability to end the program did not provide appropriate justification for doing so, violating the Administrative Procedure Act.
“The dispute before the Court is not whether DHS may rescind DACA. All parties agree that it may,” Roberts wrote in his opinion. “The dispute is instead primarily about the procedure the agency followed in doing so.”
“We do not decide whether DACA or its rescission are sound policies,” Roberts continued. ” We address only whether the agency complied with the procedural requirement that it provide a reasoned explanation for its action. Here the agency failed to consider the conspicuous issues of whether to retain forbearance and what if anything to do about the hardship to DACA recipients.”
Though liberal pundits and the mainstream media celebrated the decision, it’s not as much of a win as they think. Roberts made it clear that the federal government could revise the argument and try again, though many speculate that it may not be politically prudent for Trump to launch another assault on DACA during an election year.
Justice Clarence Thomas blasted Roberts’ decision in a strongly-worded dissent, saying:
Under the auspices of today’s decision, administrations can bind their successors by unlawfully adopting significant legal changes through Executive Branch agency memoranda. Today’s decision must be recognized for what it is: An effort to avoid a politically controversial but legally correct decision.
This is the second politically significant Supreme Court ruling this week that has swung to the left, endangering the narrative that Donald Trump has successfully created a conservative majority on the high court’s bench.