The Texas Attorney General, joined by six other states, filed suit against the federal government yesterday to terminate the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program on the basis that DACA derives from an executive overreach by President Obama in 2012. The suit was filed in the Fifth Circuit in Brownsville, Texas, where a November 2015 decision overruled President Obama’s plans to protect more than 4 million individuals from deportation.
The lawsuit further complicates the fate of DACA recipients, also known as Dreamers, as other district court rulings remain active. Most recently, a Washington, D.C. district judge ordered that DACA renewal applications should continue, and that new applicants may be eligible to apply if the federal government fails to justify within 90 days why DACA should cease altogether.
There are currently more than 700,000 DACA recipients in the United States, most of whom entered the United States as children. Under DACA, these recipients are temporarily protected from deportation.
Last September, the Trump administration gave Congress a six month deadline to legislatively propose a DACA solution while announcing its intent to phase out the program. That six month timeframe expired on March 5.
As the legal battle surrounding DACA continues, it seems more likely that the fate of DACA will ultimately be determined by the U.S. Supreme Court.