Judicial Take Over: Federal Judge Deals Major Blow To Trump Administration On DACA

WASHINGTON, DC - JUNE 01: Seated from left, Associate Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Associate Justice Anthony M. Kennedy, Chief Justice of the United States John G. Roberts, Associate Justice Clarence Thomas, and Associate Justice Stephen Breyer. Standing behind from left, Associate Justice Elena Kagan, Associate Justice Samuel Alito Jr., Associate Justice Sonia Sotomayor, and Associate Justice Neil Gorsuch pose for a portrait in the east conference room of the building of the Supreme Court of the United States on Thursday June 01, 2017 in Washington, DC (Photo by Matt McClain/The Washington Post via Getty Images)

A recent decision from U.S. District Judge John Bates may have just rolled back President Trump’s efforts on ending the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program.

Trump previously ended the program after saying former President Obama skipped over Congress to illegally start it. The late Tuesday night decision essentially said the Trump administration failed to explain why the program was illegal.

As Daily Wire reports, Bates said the decision to end DACA was “arbitrary and capricious because the Department failed adequately to explain its conclusion that the program was unlawful.”

“So, in other words, if a president takes an executive action, then the subsequent president cannot undo that executive action – even if that original executive action has been declared unconstitutional, at least in part,” Daily Wire Editor-in-Chief Ben Shapiro wrote.

Here’s more from Shapiro:

This is insanity – or, as Michael Brendan Dougherty of National Review put it, it’s “Calvinball,” the inane game created by cartoon character Calvin of Calvin and Hobbes, who arbitrarily changed the rules of the game when convenient. Here’s how Leftist courts have now ruled: an action that is obviously unconstitutional is no longer unconstitutional when performed by President Obama; undoing that unconstitutional action is unconstitutional if performed by President Trump. Hence the bewilderment of the Department of Justice, whose spokesperson answered, “Today’s order doesn’t change the Department of Justice’s position on the facts: DACA was implemented unilaterally after Congress declined to extend benefits to this same group of illegal aliens.”

As far as the implications of Bates’ decision, as Washington Post reports, the Trump administration will have 90 days to provide more evidence in arguing the program is illegal. Otherwise, and in the meantime, the administration will have to offer the temporary visas authorized by the DACA program.

Per the Washington Post:

U.S. District Judge John D. Bates on Tuesday called the government’s decision to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program “virtually unexplained” and therefore “unlawful.” However, he stayed his ruling for 90 days to give the Department of Homeland Security a chance to provide more solid reasoning for ending the program.

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Bates is the third judge to rule against Trump administration attempts to rescind DACA, which provides two-year, renewable work permits and deportation protections for about 690,000 “dreamers,” undocumented immigrants brought to this country as children.

“Each day that the agency delays is a day that aliens who might otherwise be eligible for initial grants of DACA benefits are exposed to removal because of an unlawful agency action,” Bates wrote.

But the ruling by Bates, an appointee of President George W. Bush, is far more expansive: If the government does not come up with a better explanation within 90 days, he will rescind the government memo that terminated the program and require Homeland Security to enroll new applicants, as well. Thousands could be eligible to apply.

The cases were brought forward by general counsel for the NAACP Bradford Berry, Princeton University President Christopher L. Eisgruber, president of Microsoft Brad Smith and a student.

President Trump declared DACA was “dead” after negotiations failed to find a permanent solution ahead of the imposed six-month deadline:

A federal judge in Maryland recently ruled in favor of the government in a different DACA case.

The Trump administration says it decided to end DACA because Texas and other states had threatened to sue over it, and the government believed the program would not survive a court challenge. Bates ruled that the government’s “meager legal reasoning” — and the threat of a lawsuit — did not justify terminating the program.

Congress failed to pass legislation this year protecting DACA recipients and other dreamers. Trump had hoped to use the young immigrants as a bargaining chip in the last round of budget negotiations, offering legal residency for them in exchange for money for a border wall and strict new immigration limits.


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