Rebuked: US Supreme Court Won’t Hear White House Appeal of DACA Ruling

Rebuked: US Supreme Court Won’t Hear White House Appeal of DACA Ruling
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AP Photo/ Carolyn KasterUS03:21 27.02.2018Get short URL
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On Monday, the US Supreme Court declined to hear the Trump administration’s appeal of a federal judge’s ruling requiring the government to keep the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program (DACA) in effect.

However, the decision is neither surprising nor a long-term solution to the DACA dispute, according to immigration right activists Brent Wilkes and New Sanctuary Coalition founder Juan Carlos Ruiz.

Last month, US District Judge in San Francisco William Alsup blocked US President Donald Trump from phasing out DACA, the Obama-era immigration policy that allowed young undocumented individuals who had arrived in the US as children to be given work permits and a renewable two-year period of deferred action on deportation.

​Alsup announced last month that a nationwide injunction was “appropriate” because “our country has a strong interest in the uniform application of immigration law and policy.”

“Plaintiffs have established injury that reaches beyond the geographical bounds of the Northern District of California. The problem affects every state and territory of the United States,” he wrote.

With the nation’s highest court having declined to hear the Trump administration’s appeal, the US Department of Homeland Security is obligated to continue accepting renewal applications from the approximately 700,000 young people currently enrolled in the program, rendering the administration’s deadline to shut down the program by March 5 futile. In a brief order, the court announced Monday that “it is assumed the court of appeals will act expeditiously to decide on this case.”

Wilkes and Ruiz spoke with Radio Sputnik’s Loud & Clear.

“The Trump administration had really sought an extraordinary attempt that would either bypass the appeals court or that would go straight to the Supreme Court. They certainly got rebuked by the Supreme Court. So, it wasn’t exactly a surprise that the Supreme Court said they weren’t going to hear the case. What we can expect now is for the appeals court to hear the case, as they should have in the first place, and in the meantime the DACA program will allowed to continue. But this is not a permanent solution at all. If things go badly with the appeals court, we could see this program terminated any time in the future. It’s a good day but it isn’t necessarily a solution to the problem,” Wilkes told hosts Brian Becker and John Kiriakou.

The Supreme Court’s decision not to hear the administration’s appeal was expected, since the appeals court has not yet decided on the case.

Following the Supreme Court decisions, the White House said Monday, “The DACA program — which provides work permits and myriad government benefits to illegal immigrants en masse — is clearly unlawful. The district judge’s decision to unilaterally re-impose a program that Congress had explicitly and repeatedly rejected is a usurpation of legislative authority… We look forward to having this case expeditiously heard by the appeals court and, if necessary, the Supreme Court, where we fully expect to prevail.”

“I think we need to take into consideration the political climate that we are living in and, if we can describe it in a short note, it is that this is a bullying administration,” said Ruiz, founder of the New Sanctuary Coalition, which describes itself as “an interfaith network of congregations, organizations and individuals, standing publicly in solidarity with families and communities resisting detention and deportation in order to stay together.”

“They have managed to vilify and demonize our youth.This is a general attack against human decency and a general attack on the dignity of all people. We keep saying, if they are coming for us in the morning, they are coming or you in the afternoon,” Ruiz added.”

The 9th US Circuit Court of Appeals has typically permitted nationwide injunctions against the Trump administration, which means that DACA recipients could continue to renew their applications for another year, or even longer, until the Supreme Court does eventually tackle the case.

On Monday, Trump criticized the 9th Circuit. 

“You know, we tried to get it moved quickly ’cause we’d like to help DACA. I think everybody in this room wants to help with DACA, but the Supreme Court just ruled that it has to go through the normal channels, so it’s going back in,” Trump told a group of state governors at the White House.

“There won’t be any surprise. I mean, it’s really sad when every single case filed against us — this is in the 9th Circuit — we lose, we lose, we lose, and then we do fine in the Supreme Court. But what does that tell you about our court system? It’s a very, very sad thing. So DACA’s going back, and we’ll see what happens from there,” he added.

However, Trump didn’t even follow the proper process to end DACA, Wilkes told Radio Sputnik.

“Trump didn’t file the Administrative Procedure Act,” Wilkes explained, referring to the US federal statute that determines how administrative agencies of the federal government of the US can propose and establish regulations.

“The appeals court will uphold the opinion [that Trump didn’t follow the Administrative Procedure Act]. That will put a lot of pressure on the Supreme Court to say that the president has to follow the act before doing away with DACA. It could force the Trump administration to go back and do it properly,” Wilkes added.

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