Pro-immigration demonstrators gather in front of the Supreme Court on November 12, 2019, in Washington, D.C. On Friday, a federal judge in Texas ruled former President Barack Obama didn't have the authority to create the DACA program. File Photo by Mike Theiler/UPI | License Photo
July 16 (UPI) -- A federal judge in Texas ruled Friday that Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, a program that allows certain immigrants to temporarily avoid deportation and receive renewable work permits, is illegal and ordered the Biden administration to stop granting new applications.
Judge Andrew Hanen's order won't affect current DACA recipients who have the two-year renewable work permits.
"[T]hese rulings do not resolve the issue of the hundreds of thousands of DACA recipients and others who have relied upon this program for almost a decade," Hanen's order says. "That reliance has not diminished and may, in fact, have increased over time."
The ruling stems from a 2018 lawsuit filed by Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, and eight other states, against the federal argument. The complaint argues that Texas and the other states face irreparable harm because they bear extra costs from providing health care, education and law enforcement protection to DACA recipients.
Across the country there are more than 600,000 DACA recipients, including 101,970 in Texas, which has the second most DACA recipients in the country after California, according to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.
In 2012, the Obama administration created the program to allow immigrants who were brought to the country illegally to be able to temporarily avoid deportation, work legally and pay taxes.
The Trump administration had put an end to the program before a U.S. Supreme Court ruling a year ago allowed the federal government to continue it.