Federal court hears DACA arguments

Appeals court to weigh President Trump's decision to end DACA

DACA supporters are expected to stage a rally at the Pasadena courthouse.

U.S. District Judge Carlton Reeves ruled in January 2017 that the federal court lacks jurisdiction to decide the outcome of the state House race.

The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals will soon decide if the Trump administration was justified in its decision to end DACA.

It's the first time a federal appeals court has heard arguments on the issue. The program allows them to legally live and work in the U.S. California is one of a dozen states which has filed lawsuits over the president's decision to phase out the program. Deputy Assistant Attorney General Hashim Mooppan said, "The rescission of DACA was a discretionary enforcement decision that the INA did not in any way constrain".

The judges on Tuesday seemed concerned about how the Trump administration made a decision to unwind the DACA program, whether the move had violated the equal protection rights of the recipients and if the court should take presidential tweets and statements in consideration as they considered the case.

The Trump administration now wants the 9th Circuit to throw out that ruling. Trump has even said he has considered breaking up the court. The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals has protected roughly 700,000 people who were brought to the USA illegally as children or came with families that overstayed visas.

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Michael Mongan, deputy solicitor general at the California Department of Justice, told the judges the administration had to explain why it believed DACA was unlawful and faced the risk of being invalidated by a court.

"When we say that sometimes our colleagues and this president are divisive, it's actions like this that document that, and make the fact that they are being divisive irrefutable", he said.

In court papers, Mooppan also argued the DACA move applies equally to persons of all ethnicities, although like most immigration policies, has a certain disproportionate impact on Latinos from Central and South America.

He said two of the picks being reviewed in committee demurred when asked if the Supreme Court correctly decided Brown v Board of Education, the case that ended segregation in schools.

The administration has been critical of the 9th Circuit and took the unusual step of trying to sidestep the appeals court and have the California DACA cases heard directly by the Supreme Court.

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