U.S. court orders Trump administration to fully reinstate DACA program

U.S. court orders Trump administration to fully reinstate DACA program

U.S. court orders Trump administration to fully reinstate DACA program

Washington, D.C., District Judge John Bates upheld his previous ruling that the Department of Homeland Security failed to give a rational explanation for the "arbitrary and capricious" decision to end DACA.

Since US President Donald Trump rescinded the Obama-era program on September 5, the White House has been embroiled in numerous legal battles.

The decision comes as a related case unfolds in Texas. The government is already appealing the other judges' orders, and it's likely they do so in this case as well - potentially speeding the case toward an eventual date with the Supreme Court.

U.S. District Judge John Bates ruled Friday that DACA must restart fully beginning August 23, which means the government would be required to accept new applications from DACA-eligible immigrants.

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"A conclusory assertion that a prior policy is illegal, accompanied by a hodgepodge of illogical or post hoc policy assertions, simply will not do", Bates said in his ruling.

DACA permits undocumented students who arrived in the United States as children - commonly called "DREAMers" - to obtain protection from deportation, allowing them to continue their studies or work here. Currently, the government must continue accepting applications to renew DACA status, if not new applications from those who meet the criteria to qualify.

In April, Bates also ruled against the Trump administration's move to end the program but gave the government 90 days to better explains its rationale.

Bates specifically criticized the government's contention that Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen's memo ("The Nielsen Memo") was sufficient to explain why judicial review of the decision to rescind DACA shouldn't apply.

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Bates, a George W. Bush appointee, found that explanation unsatisfactory, and said the DHS could not invent a new justification for his court, either.

"Although the Nielsen Memo purports to offer further explanation for DHS's decision to rescind DACA, it fails to elaborate meaningfully on the agency's primary rationale for its decision", he wrote.

"Princeton University's continued success as a world-class institution of learning and research depends on our ability to attract talent from all backgrounds, including DREAMers". Brad Smith, the president of Microsoft, said that finding a solution for DACA "has become an economic imperative and a humanitarian necessity". Neither a flurry of court decisions nor horse-trading in Congress has settled the issue.

But those courts had declined to restart the program in full, meaning brand new applications.

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