Federal judge: Trump administration still not justified ending DACA

Elias Hubbard
August 5, 2018

A federal judge ruled Friday that the Trump administration still did not adequately justify its reasoning behind ending the DACA program for young illegal immigrants.

The Trump Administration had been given 90 days to "better explain" why DACA was unlawful, Bates said, after it was determined that the legal position had been "virtually unexplained".

The ruling has no immediate effect because U.S. District Judge John D. Bates in Washington gave the administration 20 days to decide if it wants to appeal and ask that it be put on hold while trying to get it overturned.

There is also a hearing next week on a DACA case in which Texas and other states sued to end the program.

Judge Bates said Mr. Trump and his Homeland Security Department do have the power to revoke the Obama-era DACA program, but they cut too many corners in the way they tried to do it.

Demonstrators, many of them recent immigrants to America, protest the government shutdown and the lack of a deal on DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) outside of Federal Plaza on January 22, 2018 in New York City.

"The court sees no reason to change its earlier determination that DACA's rescission was arbitrary and capricious", he ruled. The earlier decisions are pending before appeals courts. Bates had given Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen another chance after blocking the plan in April.

"Although the Nielsen Memo purports to offer further explanation for DHS's decision to rescind DACA, it fails to elaborate meaningfully on the agency's primary rationale for its decision", Bates wrote.

Calling the renewed justification provided by the department "a hodgepodge of illogical or post hoc policy assertions" that "simply will not do", the court at the same time stressed its ruling does not mean that the DHS is not entitled to rescind the program in principal, but that it "must give a rational explanation" if it wants to do so.

"The DACA program that is hanging on due to court injunctions only provides protection for two years at a time and could end at any moment", Waldman said. Friday's ruling upheld that decision. The only one "bona fide (albeit logically dubious) reason" offered by Nielsen was not enough to sway the court's opinion, Bates wrote, since it was "articulated nowhere in DHS's prior explanation for its decision" and hence can not come into play now. They shut down the government, but backed off when public opinion began to swing against them.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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