“Teen Vogue: President Trump Sued Over DACA Decision by 15 States and Washington, D.C.”
September 8, 2017
As published by Teen Vogue, on September 7, 2017.
Donald Trump is no stranger to lawsuits — after all, he was embroiled in more than 3,500 of them prior to winning the 2016 Electoral College vote. And now he’s been served with another one as the president of the United States.
On Wednesday, September 6, 15 states and Washington, D.C., filed a lawsuit against “Donald Trump, in his official capacity as President of the United States; U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS); Elaine C. Duke, in her official capacity; U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services; U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE); and the United States of America” for the decision to rescind the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), announced on Tuesday. That’s right: Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Iowa, Massachusetts, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia, Washington state, and Washington, D.C., are literally suing the United States of America on the whole.
In a press conference Wednesday, BuzzFeed News reported that New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman said that “the effort to unwind this spectacularly successful program has been driven by the president’s personal anti-Mexican, anti-Latino bias.” During the same speech in which Trump announced his official presidential campaign, he accused Mexico of “sending people that have lots of problems,” people he claimed included drug runners, rapists, and criminals. It wasn’t the last time he’d blame people of Mexican and/or Latinx descent without evidence.
The suit itself points to those comments, alleging that: “Ending DACA, whose participants are mostly of Mexican origin, is a culmination of President’s Trump’s oft-stated commitments — whether personally held, stated to appease some portion of his constituency, or some combination thereof — to punish and disparage people with Mexican roots.” The suit also cites about two pages’ worth of instances in which the now-president exhibited bias against Latinx people, and specifically those with ties to Mexico. “As President Trump’s statements about Mexico and those with Mexican roots show, the President has demonstrated a willingness to disparage Mexicans in a misguided attempt to secure support from his constituency, even when such impulses are impermissible motives for directing governmental policy,” the suit alleges.
According to BuzzFeed News, in a call with reporters, Washington state Attorney General Bob Ferguson agreed with Schneiderman. “If a majority of Dreamers were Caucasian, does anyone think the president would take the action he took yesterday?”
The suit alleges that the decision to rescind DACA violates both the Administrative Procedure Act and the Regulatory Flexibility Act. As such, the 16 plaintiffs are asking the court to “declare that the DHS Memorandum rescinding the DACA program is unauthorized by and contrary to the Constitution and laws of the United States.” They also want to block the government from taking the information DACA recipients gave while applying for protection and using it against them.
In its case, the state of Virginia cites that “DHS repeatedly promised applicants that information they provided as part of the DACA application process would ‘not later be used for immigration enforcement purposes.'” Moreover, it alleges that U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services “affirmatively represented to DACA applicants that, except in limited circumstances, ‘[i]nformation provided in [a DACA request] is protected from disclosure to ICE and CBP [Customs and Border Protection] for the purpose of immigration enforcement proceedings.'” But a DHS memo that suggested they would deliver information provided by DACA to ICE officers if asked would seem to go against earlier promises.