Ten states have asked to Trump Administration to end the 2012 Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program by September 5th, and to refrain from renewing or issuing new DACA permits. Failure to do so will prompt the states to amend a case challenging the Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents (DAPA) and extended DACA programs to include the original DACA program.
In December 2014 26 states challenged DAPA and an extended version of DACA, claiming the programs were unconstitutional and placed a fiscal burden on the states. The lawsuit did address the 2012 program the Obama Administration created to give work permits to those brought illegally into the country as minors.
Federal District Judge Andrew Hanen temporarily blocked implementation of DAPA/extended DACA pending a review of the merits of the case. The 5th Circuit Court of Appeals upheld Hanen’s ruling and a deadlocked U.S. Supreme Court did not review the matter. The case is still in Judge Hanen’s purview, although the Trump Administration announced this month it would rescind DAPA/extended DACA.
The Administration has not rescinded DACA as candidate Trump had promised while campaigning. DHS continues to issue new DACA permits and renew expiring ones. Recognizing this, the attorneys general of Arkansas, Alabama, Idaho, Kansas, Louisiana, Nebraska, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas and West Virginia plus Idaho Gov. C.L. Otter wrote U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions seeking relief.
They wrote, “We respectfully request that the Secretary of Homeland Security phase out the DACA program…Specifically, we request that the Secretary of Homeland Security rescind the June 15, 2012 DACA memorandum and order that the Executive Branch will not renew or issue any new DACA or Expanded DACA permits in the future…If, by September 5, 2017, the Executive Branch agrees to rescind the June 15, 2012 DACA memorandum and not to renew or issue any new DACA or Expanded DACA permits in the future, then the plaintiffs that successfully challenged DAPA and Expanded DACA will voluntarily dismiss their lawsuit currently pending in the Southern District of Texas. Otherwise, the complaint in that case will be amended to challenge both the DACA program and the remaining Expanded DACA permits.
Commenting on the states’ letter, immigration attorney David Leopold said, “If they include it in the lawsuit in Texas, we all know how this goes. Judge Hanen has already ruled that [DAPA/extended DACA] violated the law, and he’s going to do the same thing to DACA. My guess is that Judge Hanen, in fact, will put a hold on DACA … at a minimum, he would stop or restrain renewal of [work permits provided by] DACA.”
Attorney General Sessions’ office has not yet issued a statement on the matter.
Updated: Mon, Oct 2nd 2017 @ 3:10pm EDT