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22 DACA recipients ask to join recent suit

[JURIST] Twenty-two "Dreamers" filed a request Tuesday to intervene [motion, PDF] in a lawsuit filed last week in the US District Court for the Southern District of Texas [official website] between seven states and the US government regarding the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals Program (DACA).

The individuals argue that because both sides of the suit want to end the DACA program, the interests of the 22 are not adequately represented.

In the lawsuit [complaint, PDF] filed last Tuesday, the Attorneys General from seven states challenged the legality of the DACA program, claiming that DACA violates the Administrative Procedure Act's notice-and-comment requirements and the Take Care Clause of Article II of the Constitution. The seven states include Texas, Alabama, Arkansas, Louisiana, Nebraska, South Carolina and West Virginia.

In a memorandum [text, PDF] to request to join the suit, the 22, whose motion was filed by the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund (MALDEF) [advocacy website], argue that the defendants, the US government, Homeland Security, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, and others, "are responsible for implementing DACA, but none of them are or ever will be directly affected by DACA. [They] have no direct personal interest at stake. Instead, Defendants will be merely required not to implement DACA."

The proposed intervenors argue this is not the case for them. Instead, they "will experience severe and direct negative consequences, chief among them the constant fear of deportation. The Proposed Defendant-Intervenors' interests are too divergent from the interests of Defendants, and too vital for the Proposed Defendant-Intervenors to be denied an active role as intervenor."

The US Attorney General announced [JURIST report] plans to rescind DACA in September. A federal court in New York blocked [JURIST report] the repeal of DACA in February. The US District Court for the District of Columbia vacated [JURIST report] the 2017 executive order in April.

"Texas and the Trump administration share the same erroneous and uninformed view of the law with respect to DACA," said Thomas Saenz, MALDEF president and general counsel, in a MALDEF statement [text]. "Such a collusive lawsuit cannot go forward without intervenors who will actually and vigorously defend the critically important initiative."

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