Judge blocks Trump decision to end young immigrant program


A federal judge on Tuesday night temporarily blocked the Trump administration's decision to end a program protecting young immigrants from deportation.

President Donald Trump was dealt yet another judicial defeat late Tuesday night when a federal judge in San Francisco ordered the administration to halt its plan to end a program protecting young undocumented migrants from deportation.

Trump ended the Obama-era Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program last year, but gave lawmakers until March to come up with a replacement. DACA allows people who were brought to the U.S. illegally as children to live and work in the U.S. legally.

District Judge William Alsup granted the plantiffs a temporary injunction, halting Trump's effort to roll back DACA while lawsuits brought by the state of California and others played out in court.

In his decision, Alsup called the decision "arbitrary" and "capricious", as well as "an abuse of discretion", and said Attorney General Jeff Sessions' rationale for ending the program "was based on a flawed legal premise".

"DACA covers a class of immigrants whose presence, seemingly all agree, pose the least, if any, threat and allows them to sign up for honest labor on the condition of continued good behavior," Alsup wrote. "This has become an important program for DACA recipients and their families, for the employers who hire them, for our tax treasuries, and for our economy."

Following Alsup's decision, California Attorney General Xavier Becerra said the ruling "is a huge step in the right direction".

"Dreamers' lives were thrown into chaos when the Trump Administration tried to terminate the DACA program without obeying the law," Becerra said, using the common name for DACA recipients.

"America is and has been home to Dreamers who courageously came forward, applied for DACA and did everything the federal government asked of them. They followed DACA's rules, they succeeded in school, at work and in business, and they have contributed in building a better America.

"We will fight at every turn for their rights and opportunities so they may continue to contribute to America," he added.

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