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Biden: Justice Department Will Appeal Judge’s Ruling That DACA Is Illegal


FILE - Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) students gather in front of the Supreme Court in Washington, June 18, 2020.
FILE - Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) students gather in front of the Supreme Court in Washington, June 18, 2020.

The U.S. Justice Department will appeal a judge’s ruling that determined a federal program protecting young immigrants living in the U.S. from deportation is illegal, President Joe Biden said Saturday.

U.S. District Judge Andrew Hanen, in the south-central state of Texas, invalidated former President Barack Obama’s program Friday, ruling that Obama acted unlawfully when he created Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) in 2012 by executive action.

In a statement released Saturday by the White House, Biden said Hanen’s ruling was “deeply disappointing,” and he renewed calls for Congress to “ensure a permanent solution.”

On Saturday, executives from Google, Twitter, Microsoft and Adobe echoed Biden’s statement and joined him in urging Congress to protect the Dreamers, as those protected under the program are commonly known.

"We have long argued in support of this program, filing an amicus brief in this case, and we are very disappointed by the decision" from the judge, Google spokesperson Jose Castaneda said, according to Reuters.

"Dreamers and immigrants make the United States — and Twitter — better," a spokesperson from social media platform said in a statement, Reuters said.

Hanen’s ruling agreed with a group of U.S. states, led by Texas, that sued to end the DACA program.

While Hanen’s order did not affect immigrants already covered by DACA, Biden said the ruling “relegates hundreds of thousands of young immigrants to an uncertain future.”

DACA has enabled hundreds of thousands of young people, who were brought to the U.S. illegally as children or overstayed their visas, to remain in the country.

The U.S. House of Representatives passed legislation in March creating a pathway to citizenship for those affected, but it failed to gain traction in the Senate.

Immigration advocates will try to add a provision to protect Dreamers in a comprehensive budget bill Democrats hope will be approved by Congress this year, though it is uncertain if the language will remain in the final version.

Some information for this report came from Reuters and The Associated Press.

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