A federal judge in Maryland on Monday struck down a legal challenge to President Trump’s plans to end legal protections for young undocumented immigrants, dealing a blow to DACA recipients on the same day that the White House deadline to end the program arrived.
In his opinion, Judge Roger Titus wrote that although he “does not like the outcome of this case,” it’s not his job to create immigration policy.
“Hopefully, the Congress and the President will finally get their job done,” Titus wrote, as quoted by Politico. He also cited Judge Gonzalo Curiel, who was subjected to Trump’s racist attacks in 2016 but recently sided with the president in a ruling about his border wall.
Although the ruling is a setback for DACA recipients and their allies, there are still active nationwide injunctions issued by courts in New York and California that are preventing the program from ending. (The Supreme Court declined to hear the Trump administration’s challenge to those lower court rulings late last month.)
The Justice Department referenced those rulings in a statement to Politico which hailed the Maryland decision, saying it “highlights a serious problem with the disturbing growth in the use of nationwide injunctions.”
For now, the young immigrants brought here as children remain in the same uncertain holding pattern they’ve been in since Trump announced the Obama-era program would end last September. They are at the mercy of the courts, the White House, and a Congress unwilling or unable to act to protect them.