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A Republican judge slapped down Trump’s bid to kill DACA because it doesn’t make sense

A federal judge orders the Trump administration to resume processing applications in 90 days.

A federal judge has rejected the White House decision to terminate the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program. Judge John Bates became the third judge to slap down Donald Trump’s move to kill the program — and more significantly the first to order officials to begin accepting new applications.

In a 60-page ruling issued Tuesday, the judge, who sits on the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, called the decision to end the immigration program “arbitrary and capricious.”


He added that the legal arguments put forward by the Department of Homeland Security “failed adequately to explain its conclusion that the program was unlawful.”

Judges in San Francisco and Brooklyn had previously ruled the legal basis for the termination was invalid and ordered DHS to accept renewals of the two-year permits issued by the program.

However, Bates went a step further, ordering the administration to begin accepting new applications for the program giving protections to people brought to the U.S. illegally as children.

Read: Trump has already banned Muslim refugees. These numbers prove it.

Bates, who was appointed by George W. Bush, is the first Republican appointee to rule against the end of DACA.

However, his ruling will not take effect immediately, as the judge gave the DHS 90 days “to allow the agency an opportunity to better explain its rescission.”

The Justice Department responded to Bates’ ruling by saying nothing has changed. “DACA was implemented unilaterally after Congress declined to extend benefits to this same group of illegal aliens,” Devin O’Malley, a spokesman for the Justice Department, said in a statement. “The Department of Homeland Security therefore acted within its lawful authority in deciding to wind down DACA in an orderly manner.”

On Sept. 5, 2017, U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced the DACA program would end in six months, and in the ensuing period Democrats and Republicans in Congress failed to reach an agreement on what to do next.

Cover image: Demonstrators protest President Trump's attempts to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), an executive action made by President Obama that protected minors known as Dreamers who entered the country illegally from deportation, outside of the U.S. Capitol in Washington, USA on March 5, 2018. (Photo by Samuel Corum/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)