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Federal court reverses DACA shutdown

10 Jan

A federal judge blocked President Donald Trump’s effort to shut down the Obama-era program that provides quasi-legal status and work permits to foreigners who entered the U.S. illegally as children.

In a ruling Tuesday evening, San Francisco-based U.S. District Court judge William Alsup ordered the administration to resume accepting renewal applications for the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, better known as DACA.

Alsup said Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ conclusion that the program was illegal appeared to be “based on flawed legal premise.”

Unless halted by a higher court, the ruling will allow former DACA recipients who failed to renew by an October 5 deadline a chance to submit renewal applications and will also require the administration to allow renewal of applications expiring in the future. The decision does not permit new applications for DACA status.

If the judge’s order remains in place, it could also roil ongoing legislative efforts by DACA by undercutting the urgency many advocates have expressed, calling for legislation to be passed before large numbers of Dreamers begin losing their protected status in March.