One of the major platforms that President Donald J. Trump campaigned on was the elimination of the DACA program. Now, three years after his election, the matter has gone to the Supreme Court.
DACA, or Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, is a program that was put into place in 2012 during the Obama administration, granting temporary protection from deportation to about 700,000 young immigrants, known as DREAMers. Brought to the United States illegally as children, the DREAMers are legally allowed to work and go to school after passing a background check.
President Trump’s attorney general has criticized the program as “illegal” and “unconstitutional”, and the administration has maintained that they have no choice but to pull the plug on the system for that reason. Three federal courts have ruled that if this policy is revoked, the administration would need to provide a more complete rationale, weighing the pros and cons of the program, along with the benefits it brings. The Trump administration has since appealed to the Supreme Court. The Supreme Court itself is divided over the decision, split between conservative and liberal attitudes.
There are three possible outcomes from this scenario. The first is that the Supreme Court could conclude that courts may not review the Trump administration’s decision on terminating DACA. Although this outcome would harm the DACA program, making its termination easier, the possibility of DACA being reinstated by a future administration would remain. The second is that the Supreme Court could review the movement to end DACA and decide it is unlawful. This outcome would be a win for the DREAMers, bringing us back to September 4th, 2017, before the Trump administration announced it was terminating DACA. The third possibility is that the Court may conclude that the Trump administration’s termination of DACA is lawful. This would be a blow to businesses across the U.S., and it would be a major loss for the DREAMers. The situation is uncertain, and the outcome is awaited with bated breath.
By Elliot Weix