It was in 2012 that then-President Barack Obama, despite having repeatedly insisted he had no power to do so, created via executive order the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program that granted a sort of amnesty and benefits to illegal migrants who arrived in the U.S. as children.
Since then, DACA has been declared illegal and unconstitutional by the federal courts, and an appeals court panel just reaffirmed, yet again, that Obama lacked the authority to create the program, the Conservative Brief reported.
However, in light of various circumstances, DACA will continue to remain in effect for the time being, pending further litigation at the district court level, though it has been barred from expansion and accepting new recipients.
Circuit court reaffirms DACA is unlawful
CNN reported that in July, a federal district judge in Texas ruled, once again, that DACA was illegal and unconstitutional, and issued a nationwide injunction that blocked it from enrolling new recipients.
That judge did allow current recipients to remain enrolled and even be approved for biannual renewal in the program.
The ruling was appealed and, in the meantime, President Joe Biden’s administration proposed various changes to “preserve and fortify” the DACA program in August that was set to take effect at the end of October.
Meanwhile, the appeal of the district court’s ruling was just addressed by a three-judge panel of the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals. In their 46-page opinion, the judges affirmed the lower court’s ruling but then remanded the case back to that district court to consider the new changes the administration had proposed.
At the same time, though, the panel also preserved a partial stay that allows DACA to remain in place for its roughly 600,000 current recipients but blocks the administration from approving any new enrollees into the program.
Despite DACA being unconstitutional, the judges wrote, “We also recognize that DACA has had profound significance to recipients and many others in the ten years since its adoption. Given the ‘uncertainty of final disposition’ and the ‘inevitable disruption that would arise from a lack of continuity and stability,’ we preserve the stay as to existing recipients.”
Biden not happy with ruling or Republicans
President Biden issued a statement to express how “disappointed” he was with the Fifth Circuit’s ruling and chastised Republicans for their efforts to dismantle the unlawful program and place “in limbo” the lives of so-called “Dreamers,” or DACA recipients.
He further insisted that “it is long past time for Congress to pass permanent protections for Dreamers, including a pathway to citizenship.”
“My Administration is committed to defending Dreamers against attacks from Republican officials in Texas and other States. This challenge to DACA is just another example of the extreme agenda being pushed by MAGA-Republican officials,” the president concluded.