Should DACA be codified into law?

Background

Many children (600,000) came to the United States illegally when their parents illegally immigrated.

These children grew up and many graduated from high school, college and have gone on to become productive members of society.

The problem, of course, is that they remain in the United States illegally and could technically be subject to deportation.

On June 12, 2012 President Obama announced Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) that was designed to provide legal protection against deportation for any of these children (many of which are now adults).

The action has been controversial from the beginning because Obama issued it as an Executive Order and it has always been questionable as to whether or not Obama had the authority to issue the order.

In 2017, President Trump reversed Obama’s Executive Order, leaving the beneficiaries of DACA subject to deportation. The Supreme Court, however, “issued a 5-4 decision finding that the Trump administration’s termination of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) was (1) judicially reviewable and (2) done in an arbitrary and capricious manner, in violation of the Administrative Procedure Act (APA).” NILC.

As of today, DACA still stands as law and is supported by the Biden administration, but it is again being challenged in the courts and this time it will likely end-up before a less friendly Supreme Court

Federal courts are expected to end the 2012 executive order known as DACA, which has protected young immigrants at risk of losing their work authorization and security from deportation sometime early next year. Congressional Republicans have stated their opposition to protecting Dreamers unless Democrats make the unlikely move of making significant concessions to increase security at the border and reject asylum-seekers. Democrats are projected to hold on to the majority in the Senate, but control of the House remains unknown.

More than 600,000 people benefit from DACA protections, which allow them to live and work in the U.S. without fear of deportation.

Last month, the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that DACA was illegal but allowed more than 600,000 DACA recipients to keep their status while a lower court reviewed a new DACA rule the Biden administration put forward.

The judge in the lower court, U.S. District Judge Andrew Hannen of Southern Texas, later ordered attorneys to provide more information and said he expects additional legal arguments related to the new rule. Hannen did not set a timetable for the case.

The case is likely to head to the Supreme Court, where the conservative majority would almost certainly strike the program down.

President Joe Biden expressed disappointment in the 5th Circuit’s decision, blaming the decision in a statement on Republican state officials who pushed efforts to strip DACA recipients of their protections. Biden urged Congress to act on DACA. NBC News

Since an executive order is always subject to reversal, there are always efforts to have Congress codify the Executive Order as legislation, and as we approach another Lame Duck session there is talk again of pushing Congress to act on this issue.

DACA recipients are known as “Dreamers.”

Should DACA be codified into law?

General

DACA Becomes Federal Regulation, but Future Still Uncertain

Yes

Protecting these individuals through an executive order is always legally questionable and it would be more constitutionally appropriate to do it through legislation. Many individuals fear the program could be reversed.

Retaining the protections through an executive order always risks reversal if a new President is unfriendly toward the protections

These children, now adults, have lived their entire lives in the US and it’s not fair to force them to return to countries they do not know

These individuals are now making important contributions to the economy as doctors, engineers, restraunt owners and workers and laborers

It’s just cruel

Major companies warn ending DACA could hit the economy where it hurts

Hitting the economy where it hurts

DACA is a crusade to help children
Trump’s DACA decision could cost thousands of jobs 

Ending DACA would be the President’s most evil act

CEOs come out in support of DACA

Why ending DACA is unprecedented 

The case for keeping DACA 

Economists warn deporting DACA recipients could hurt the economy