The Washington Examiner is reporting that the U.S. Supreme Court has agreed to hear the dispute over the federal government’s efforts to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program or DACA. This program currently protects DACA recipients against deportation for almost 800,000 immigrants with no legal immigration status whose families brought them to the U.S. as children.
The Trump administration first announced that it would terminate the program in November 2017 and gave Congress a deadline of March 2018 in which to pass a law authorizing the program to continue. DACA recipients swiftly challenged the move in court, and a federal judge in California blocked the Trump administration’s termination of DACA. The nationwide injunction also required the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to continue accepting and processing renewal applications for DACA recipients.
Last year, the Trump administration took the unusual move of bypassing the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit and requesting that the U.S. Supreme Court directly take up the case. At that time, the high Court declined to do so. Although the Ninth Circuit heard oral arguments in the case in May 2018, the Trump administration again circumvented a forthcoming ruling by directly appealing to the U.S. Supreme Court a second time. Shortly after that, the Ninth Circuit upheld the decision of the federal district court to block termination of the DACA program.
Meanwhile, the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals also ruled that the DHS decision to terminate the program was arbitrary and capricious. Thus far, federal district court judges in New York and Washington DC also have ruled in the same manner on the issue.
The Supreme Court has agreed to hear an appeal of the Ninth Circuit’s ruling on DACA, along with two other similar cases in which appellate courts have not yet issued rulings. Arguments in the cases will occur before the high Court in its upcoming session, which begins in October 2019. Absent the parties settling, the Supreme Court is likely to issue its decision next summer. No matter which side the Court takes, the outcome is sure to have a direct impact on the 2020 presidential election.
At the end of June 2019, however, the Supreme Court agreed to take up the case.
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