Texas judge rejects call to dismiss DACA lawsuit

By Justin Stoltzfus | Jun 16, 2018

BROWNSVILLE, Texas – U.S. District Judge Andrew S. Hanen entered a one-sentence order rejecting a motion to dismiss a multistate effort to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, DACA, filed Tuesday by the Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund .

News reports from the end of May indicate the Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund (MALDEF) filed a motion to dismiss the case, which Hanen then rejected in a terse, one-sentence order. MALDEF had challenged the jurisdiction of the case, saying it belongs in California court. Hanen's order, while keeping the case in Texas, also set deadlines for expediting some aspects of the matter, giving the federal government only until the end of June to complete discovery on the case and finalize other details.

Some advocates of DACA worry that it may ultimately be stamped out by an administration not known for being soft on immigration. 

“There is widespread support for DACA by the American people,” Susan Mary Weishar, Ph.D. A Migration Specialist/Fellow at Loyola University New Orleans' Jesuit Social Research Institute told Louisiana Record June 12. “DACA has helped immigrants who grew up here and American in every way but the paperwork to begin to realize their dreams and fulfill their God-given potential.”

Weishar said the law also benefits states and municipalities in an economic way. 

“Every state has benefited financially from tax payments generated by DACA recipients – whether through increased payroll taxes or sales tax receipts,” she said. 

Detailing the basis for the DACA law, Weishar suggested that since the law relies on deliberate use of presidential power, it tends to hang in the balance. 

DACA was based on President Barack Obama's lawful use of prosecutorial discretion,” Weishar said. “Unfortunately, without the support of President Trump, its long-term future is not bright.”

Now, interested parties on both sides are watching what's next from Texas courts on the matter as DACA continues to be a debated issue in the legal arena, and in public discourse. The other states involved in the lawsuit are Alabama, Arkansas, Louisiana, Nebraska, South Carolina and West Virginia. 

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Louisiana State University U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas

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