Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) is a program that provides temporary protection from deportation for individuals who were brought to the United States as children (“Dreamers”). The program, which was established by an executive memorandum from President Obama, is extremely popular. Multiple polls have consistently demonstrated overwhelming public support (70 to 80 percent) for maintaining DACA.
Donald Trump wants to end the DACA program. In 2017 his administration announced that it was repealing the program and that DACA recipients should “use the time remaining on their work authorizations to prepare for and arrange their departure from the United States.” Lawsuits were immediately filed against Trump’s repeal order and the dispute ended up in the Supreme Court. On June 18, the court ruled against the Trump administration, saying it had failed to provide a “reasoned explanation” for its action, as required by the Administrative Procedure Act. Chief Justice John Roberts wrote the majority opinion.
Trump and some conservative members of Congress have criticized Chief Justice Roberts for voting with the “liberal” SCOTUS justices to allow the DACA program to remain intact. These folks need to be reminded that a large majority of Americans want this program to be continued.
A similarly large majority wants the Congress to pass legislation to provide DACA recipients with permanent protection from deportation and a pathway to citizenship. Multiple bills to do just that have been introduced, but the Republican-controlled Senate has refused to pass any of these bills.
The only way to provide permanent protection for the hundreds of thousands of DACA recipients is to elect a Democratic Senate and a Democratic president. Please keep this in mind when you cast your vote in this year’s election.
Ed Shaffer Galien