A federal judge in Texas on Friday ordered the Biden administration to halt the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program going forward, calling it “illegally implemented.” U.S. District Court Judge Andrew Hanen issued a ruling siding with Texas and other Republican-led states, writing that then-President Barack Obama exceeded his authority in establishing the immigration program in 2012. “The public interest of the nation is always served by the cessation of a program that was created in violation of law and whose existence violates the law,” Hanen wrote. The program offers work permits and protection against deportation to undocumented immigrants who were brought to the U.S. as children. Hanen’s order blocks the Department of Homeland Security from approving any new DACA applications, cutting off tens of thousands of young immigrants and prospective recipients from the legal protections. But it does not affect current recipients.
Omar Jadwat, director of the ACLU’s Immigrants’ Rights Project, issued a statement calling the ruling “wrong” and “subject to appeal.” “Dreamers’ futures shouldn’t be in the hands of the courts,” Jadwat said.