CA federal district court rules against President's decision not to renew DACA applicants

DACA recipient Jorge Buenrostro has been in the U.S. for 13 years and is currently studying paralegal studies/Jennifer Munoz (WGXA)

MACON, Ga. -- This week a California federal district court ruled that President Trump's decision on Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) not to renew cases that originated before September 2017 is unlawful.

However, the court ruled that the President can uphold his executive order to deny new applicants.

Dreamer Jorge Buenrostro has been the U.S. for 13 years, having been brought from his home country of Mexico when he was around 10-years-old.

He said, "It was hard leaving behind family, but you know my mom had to make a choice either to give me a better life or you know continue living in Mexico like that."

Buenrostro is currently studying paralegal studies and said that the California court's ruling gives him renewed hope. Before the ruling, Buenrostro felt uncertain about his status in the U.S., but now believes that Congress or the President may enact a law that is more permanent and can create a path to citizenship for DACA recipients. His DACA status will expire in 2019.

"This can help us with renewing our permits if something doesn't get done in time. So it gave me hope that I am able to renew it again," Buenrostro said.

Brooke Miller, a professor of political science at Middle Georgia State University, believes that President Trump's administration will likely repeal the federal district court's decision and that the case will eventually reach the United States Supreme Court.

Miller advised that this process is usually lengthy and said that even with the federal district court's ruling, a new program hasn't been created or solidified. She said that when a person applies for DACA, they are given a two year work permit that allows them to either find an occupation or attend school.

She said of the district court's decision that "The court ruling gives them kind of a stay. They are kind of at the status quo. They don't know if they are legal. They don't know if they are not. Hopefully it gives the senate a little more urgency to go ahead and act."

Miller added that right now Congress is working to pass a bill that would address both DACA and the border wall before the potential government shutdown on Jan. 19, but the stipulations of that working bill are not known.

"So I'm not sure what they can come up with in literally about a week that is going to fix immigration and pacify President Trump for his want for money for the wall," Miller said.

That group working to establish a bill is a bipartisan committee of legislators that includes U.S. Senator Chuck Schumer (D - NY) and U.S. John Cornyn (R - TX).

Since 2012, there have been a total of 2,139,230 DACA applications. Out of those, 1,801,790 applications have been approved, 80,942 have been denied and 118,645 are pending.

In Georgia, over 50,000 DACA applications have been approved since 2012. Georgia is one of the top 10 states for approving DACA recipients.

All DACA applicants must pay a $495 application fee, have no felonies or misdemeanors and submit their fingerprints and a background check. DACA applicants can apply to renew their status every two years, but their first application must be submitted between the ages of 15-30 and the individual must have been brought to the U.S. illegally.

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