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Key Observers Agree: SCOTUS Decision on DACA a Sharp Rebuke of Trump’s Rush to Kill Off the Program

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Key observers are weighing in on yesterday’s news that the U.S. Supreme Court declined to bypass the appeals courts in order to take up a DACA case. Coverage is highlighting that the news from the Supreme Court represents a sharp rebuke to the Trump administration, and their continued extremism and hostility towards Dreamers. It also represents a clear victory for California Attorney General Xavier Becerra, who brought the original case on behalf of the University of California system. The Supreme Court’s decision keeps in place lower court decisions that allow current DACA recipients to continue to apply for status renewals. Significantly, it may well mean that a final decision on the case will extend past next November’s midterm elections, meaning that if this Congress does not take long overdue action on the Dream Act, the next Congress will.

Below are excerpts from recent coverage:

Brett Kendall and Laura Meckler in the Wall Street Journal: “Supreme Court Deals Setback to Trump Immigration Policy on ‘Dreamers’

“The Supreme Court dealt a setback to President Donald Trump’s immigration policy on Monday, declining to take up an administration appeal that sought a quick end to the Obama-era program protecting young, undocumented immigrants who came to the U.S. as children. The high court’s action, which effectively requires Mr. Trump to finish litigating in the lower courts first, means that hundreds of thousands of program recipients may continue to renew their protections while legal challenges continue, a process that could take another year or longer.”

Dara Lind in Vox: “The Supreme Court may have just kept DACA on life support for several more months

“That process is likely to take months — and it’s extremely unlikely that both appeals courts (both of which are fairly liberal and have consistently ruled against the Trump administration on immigration issues) are going to side with the administration. That means that renewals will likely remain open at least until the Supreme Court agrees to take up the cases after the appeals courts rule — which will almost certainly be during the Court’s next term, which starts in October of this year.”

Adam Liptak and Michael D. Shear in The New York Times: “Justices Turn Down Trump’s Appeal in ‘Dreamers’ Case

“[T]wo federal judges have ordered the administration to maintain major pieces of the program while legal challenges move forward, notably by requiring the administration to allow people enrolled in it to renew their protected status. The administration has not sought stays of those injunctions. The Supreme Court’s move will, as a practical matter, temporarily shield the young immigrants who already had signed up for the DACA program from immediate deportation, and allow them to keep working legally in the United States. Their status lasts for two years and is renewable.”

Shikha Dalmia in Reason, “The Supreme Court’s Punt Is a Setback for Trump’s Hardball DACA Tactics”

“[E]ven if the Trump administration eventually prevails in court, the Supreme Court’s punt back to the lower courts will cost it a great deal of leverage in ramrodding its extreme and sweeping designs through Congress. Trump thought that by scrapping DACA and setting Dreamers up for deportation he could use them as leverage to force Congress to not just give it $25 billion-plus for a border wall but also agree to changes that would make America’s asylum program virtually useless and also cut legal immigration nearly in half. However, this proved to be too odious for anyone but the extreme nativist lawmakers to swallow and, hence, Congress has been deadlocked for two months, unable to agree on a bill … the Supreme Court’s demurral has pulled the rug out from Trump’s hardball tactics.”

David Nakamura and Robert Barnes in The Washington Post: “Supreme Court decision on ‘dreamers’ puts pressure back on Congress to act

“Although the Supreme Court said it expects the appeals court to act quickly, legal analysts said the litigation could take months. It is extremely unlikely that the high court would agree to take the case before the next term, which begins in October.”

Robert Barnes in The Washington Post: “Supreme Court declines to enter controversy over ‘dreamers,’ rejects Trump administration’s request to review lower court rulings

“California Attorney General Xavier Becerra (D), among those who challenged the way the Trump administration ended the DACA program, said the Supreme Court was right to deny the government’s ‘unusual and unnecessary request to bypass the appeals court review of our DACA lawsuit … For the sake of the Dreamers who help make our economy and our state strong, the rescission of DACA should not be allowed to stand.’”

Richard Wolf and Alan Gomez in USA Today: “Supreme Court snubs Trump, keeps DACA immigration program in place for now

“The action represents a temporary victory for the young adults brought to the U.S. illegally by their parents or guardians under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program established by President Barack Obama in 2012. And it represents a major setback for the Trump administration, which vowed to continue the legal battle in the lower courts.”

According to Frank Sharry, Executive Director of America’s Voice:

“Trump ended DACA and has been holding Dreamers hostage in exchange for the enactment of his radical and racist immigration agenda. The Republican leadership in Congress has been enabling this cynical and sadistic strategy. Together, they have conspired to beat back every responsible bipartisan solution that’s been offered, leaving prospects for a much-needed legislative breakthrough considerably diminished. Fortunately, the courts have upended that game and protected DACA beneficiaries for the time being. While Congress should continue to feel the heat to enact a permanent solution, it is welcome news that the litigation track is protecting some Dreamers in a way that the White House and Congress refuse to. Let us be thankful that at least our courts are still committed to upholding the rule of law and protecting the rights of the vulnerable.”