President Trump’s decision to end the Deferred Action for Child Arrivals (DACA) program after a six-month delay has not been well-received, the say the least. In addition to the protests and walkouts that have taken place in response to the decision, more than a dozen state attorneys general have filed lawsuits against the Trump administration.
Last week, 15 states and the District of Columbia announced that they were suing to defend the DACA program. On Monday, four more states — California, Minnesota, Maryland, and Maine — joined in.
During a press conference on Monday, California Attorney General Xavier Becerra called Trump’s decision “unlawful and mean-spirited.” He also argued that it violates due process provisions of the Constitution and would negatively affect California’s economy.
‘There is no state that will be more economically impacted by the Trump administration’s unconstitutional and illegal termination of DACA than California.
‘You don’t become the sixth-largest economy in the world just because. It just so happens that one of every four of the DACA recipients in this country — some 200,000 — live and work and call California their home, and they’ve been helping California become the sixth-largest economy in the world.’
Becerra went on to condemn Trump for making this decision after saying earlier this year that DACA recipients could “rest easy.”
‘We don’t bait and switch in this country.’
Becerra was joined on stage at the press conference by two DACA recipients who were both brought to the U.S. when they were just four years old. One of the recipients, 21-year-old Eva Jimenez, said that learning about the potential repeal of DACA has been “terrifying.” She added that she has felt “vulnerable” since the announcement was made and is now worried about being able to graduate from UC Davis.
California’s lawsuit, which includes Maine, Maryland, and Massachusetts as co-plaintiffs, argues about a repeal of DACA:
‘The Trump Administration’s termination of DACA and the associated Department of Homeland Security (DHS) memo and FAQs may lead to the untenable outcome that the Administration will renege on the promise it made to Dreamers and their employers that information they gave to the government for their participation in the program will not be used to deport them or prosecute their employers.’
When asked about the lawsuit, USC law professor Niels Frenzen, who specializes in immigration law, has said that, if the states win their case, they will “succeed in delaying the termination of DACA.”
California Governor Jerry Brown expressed support for the lawsuit in a statement released on Monday:
‘California stands with the millions of immigrants who make this state a vibrant and prosperous place. We are investing millions of dollars in new legal aid to help law-abiding people stay with their families in the U.S.’
However, Robin Hvidston, executive director of We the People Rising, a group that advocates for stricter immigration laws, has called the suit “misguided and premature and a misuse of tax dollars.”
Watch Becerra’s comments on the lawsuit in the video below, available via YouTube.
Featured image via Win McNamee/Getty Images.