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Judge declares DACA program illegal for the second time: What does this mean for Dreamers?

Federal Judge Andrew Hanen has declared for the second time that the DACA program is illegal, asserting that the solution lies with the legislative branch and not with the executive or judicial powers. While the judge’s decision allows current DACA beneficiaries to renew their protections, it closes the door to new applicants. This decision is part of a lengthy legal battle that has been ongoing for five years. The judge bases his ruling on the belief that there is no substantial difference between the DACA program implemented by Barack Obama in 2012 and the revised version presented by the Biden administration.

The judge’s ruling does not require the government to take any immigration, deportation, or punitive measures against DACA beneficiaries. The decision does not affect current DACA beneficiaries, who can continue to renew their protections and work permits for another two years. However, it prohibits the Department of Homeland Security from processing new enrollment applications from undocumented immigrants who have not previously registered in the program.

Despite this decision, the Secretary of Homeland Security has stated that Dreamers will not be deported, and DACA renewals and work permits will continue to be processed. Currently, there are more than 586,000 Dreamers protected by DACA, with approximately 85,000 pending applications. The future of DACA will be determined through future appeals and legal processes.

This latest decision by Judge Hanen has once again placed DACA in the spotlight and has generated uncertainty among Dreamers and immigrant rights advocates. While the decision does not affect current DACA beneficiaries, the closing of the door to new applicants raises questions about the program’s future and the need for a permanent legislative solution.

In conclusion, Judge Hanen’s ruling reaffirms his previous stance that the DACA program is illegal but allows current beneficiaries to renew their protections. However, this decision also underscores the need for a legislative solution to ensure a more stable and secure future for Dreamers.