The Latest: DACA hearing focuses on judge’s prior ruling
HOUSTON (AP) — The Latest on federal court hearing on program shielding young immigrants from deportation (all times local):
A hearing before a federal judge in Texas over the fate of a program shielding young immigrants from deportation has focused heavily on the judge’s previous ruling against an earlier Obama-era program.
U.S. District Judge Andrew Hanen heard arguments Wednesday in a case brought by Texas against the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, or DACA. Texas and several other states say the program is unlawful.
Three other federal judges have ruled against the Trump administration’s attempt to end DACA. If Hanen rules that DACA could end, it would create a conflict between legal rulings that legal experts say would draw the attention of higher courts.
Hanen asked pointed questions of both sides Wednesday about how DACA compares to his 2015 ruling against an expansion of DACA and another program shielding immigrant parents in the U.S. illegally.
He asked attorneys to submit new briefs in the case by Monday.
Opponents of a President Barack Obama-era program shielding young immigrants from deportation will go before a federal judge who they hope will rule that the program cannot continue.
Three federal judges have ruled against President Donald Trump’s administration’s efforts to end Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals. But a new lawsuit was filed in Texas before Judge Andrew Hanen, the same judge who ended another Obama effort to expand protections for immigrants in the U.S. illegally.
Hanen will hear arguments on the case Wednesday.
If he rules DACA is invalid, it would conflict with the other rulings in favor of the program. Legal experts say that conflict would draw the attention of higher courts or the U.S. Supreme Court, which might side with Hanen.
About 700,000 immigrants are covered by DACA.