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US Judge Blocks Trump Move to End DACA Program for Immigrants

Nearly 700,000 young people, known as Dreamers, were protected from deportation and allowed to work legally under the DACA program as of September 2017.Nearly 700,000 young people, known as Dreamers, were protected from deportation and allowed to work legally under the DACA program as of September 2017.

A US judge in San Francisco temporarily barred President Donald Trump’s administration on Tuesday from ending a program shielding young people brought to the United States illegally by their parents from deportation.

The Trump administration announced in September it would rescind Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA, a decision that was challenged in multiple federal courts by a variety of Democratic state attorneys general, organizations and individuals, Reuters reported.

US District Judge William Alsup ruled in San Francisco on Tuesday the program must remain in place while the litigation is resolved. The ruling could complicate negotiations between Trump and congressional leaders over immigration reform.

Nearly 700,000 young people, known as Dreamers, were protected from deportation and allowed to work legally under the DACA program as of September 2017, Alsup’s ruling said.

Alsup ruled that the federal government did not have to process new applications from people who had never before received protection under the program. However, he ordered the government to continue processing renewal applications from people who had previously been covered.

Trump blasted the US court system as “unfair,” saying in a tweet that “It just shows everyone how broken and unfair our Court System is when the opposing side in a case (such as DACA) always runs to the 9th Circuit and almost always wins before being reversed by higher courts.”

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Mark Rosenbaum, an attorney for Public Counsel, which represents six DACA recipients in the case, applauded the ruling. “These young people played by all the rules. They demonstrated they are no threat,” he said.

“They are in the military; they are studying in school; they are creating jobs. Now the courts have told the government they have to play by the rules,” Rosenbaum said.

Roy Beck, president of Numbers USA, which backs stricter immigration laws, dismissed the significance of the court’s action, calling it “an aberration that surely will not be allowed to stand as it is appealed.”

The ruling comes as Trump and US congressional leaders are trying to hammer out immigration reforms, including whether and how to extend protections to young people who were covered by DACA.

Trump met lawmakers on Tuesday and said he would back a two-phased approach to overhauling US immigration laws.

The first step would focus on protecting Dreamers from deportation, along with funding for a wall and other restrictions that Democrats have opposed.

Trump said he then favors moving quickly to address even more contentious issues, including a possible pathway to citizenship for 11 million illegal immigrants that is opposed by many Republicans and many of his supporters.

 

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