Chelsea Faber Feature National Nov 26, 2019 Uncategorized

Supreme Court decide the future of DACA


The Supreme Court of the United States heard the case made by the Trump Administration to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, which allows undocumented individuals who entered the country as a child to remain in the United States legally. 

DREAMers were those brought to the U.S. illegally as children, through the program they could stay in the country to work and attend school, pending they meet certain requirements as well as pass a background check. 

This program impacts almost 700,000 young people and began during the Obama Presidency, however in September 2017 the Trump Administration announced they would begin to end protections for DACA recipients.

The process to end DACA was announced as a form of “winding down” this amnesty for DREAMers. Due to the intense changes that would follow eliminating the program, as well as concern as to the legality of the steps taken to end DACA, federal courts heard challenges to Trump’s announcement. 

Lower courts have decided to keep the program alive, however the Supreme Court’s decision will be the end of legal debate and will reveal the fate of 700,000 individuals living in this country. 

Federal appeals courts have ruled in favor of DACA, citing that when a policy which impacts so many people, businesses and the overall economy have depended on is to be eliminated, there must be a full reasoning provided, one including a comprehensive cost-benefit analysis. 

As is the case with major decisions before the Supreme Court, a verdict is not expected until June of 2020, falling in the heat of the presidential campaign. 

Supporters of DACA have claimed the president is spreading misinformation about the reality of DREAMers.  Trump stated in a tweet that many participants are “no longer very young, are far from ‘angels’” and that “some are very tough, hardened criminals,” however, those with a felony and serious misdemeanors are not eligible for DACA protection.

Opponents of DACA have concern that these protections could encourage individuals to illegally enter the country in hopes for their children to be eligible for this program.  Rep. Lamar Smith of Texas explained that, “The Dream Act will only encourage more illegal immigration.” 

Members of Congress from both sides of the aisle have called for bipartisan legislation to solve the issue at the heart of the DACA debate, rather than a stark elimination of the program. The wish for a resolution has been talked of since Trump announced the end of the program in 2017, however due to the increased political polarization of congress, little progress has been made. 

2020 Presidential hopefuls have issued statements on their standing in this debate in light of the Supreme Court taking up the case.  “Dreamers are woven into the fabric of our country, & they belong here,” said Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren. 

Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders condemned the President while issuing his support for DREAMers tweeting, “Trump’s attack on the DACA program is the ugliest and most cruel decision made by a president in our modern history.”

Former Vice President, Joe Biden tweeted his support for DREAMers saying “(they) should be treated like the Americans that they are. It’s past time for Congress to provide a pathway to citizenship and a fair shot at the American dream.”

Similarly, Pete Buttigieg’s headquarters tweeted a video profiling DACA recipients with the caption, “#HomeIsHere and you belong.”

The future of the program will be decided in the months to come, leaving hundreds of thousands of individuals in limbo until then.  With congress seeming unmotivated to pass legislation in the current political situation, DREAMers may be waiting until June 2020 for answers

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