Now or later? That's the essential question facing the U.S. Supreme Court, as it decides this week whether to take up the appeal of President Trump's decision to end the DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) amnesty program. The high court will decide by Friday whether to take up the case this session, or wait while the case moves through the lower courts. So far, those lower courts have ruled against the President.
There is a lot riding on the Supreme Court's decision on when or if to take up DACA. "President Trump attempted to wind down the Obama-era immigration policy for the dreamers (DACA), and several courts throughout the country ruled that President Trump couldn't stop the policy," says Josh Blackman, professor at South Texas College of Law-Houston. "Now the Supreme Court is being asked to consider should they weigh in now, or maybe wait another year as this case works its way through the lower courts."
The timing of the Supreme Court's decision could go a long way toward determining how long this issue will linger over national politics and potentially the 2020 elections. "If the court fast-tracks it, we'll get a ruling by June of 2019, and the legality of the Trump policy will be clarified," says Blackman. "If it is not resolved this year, this will actually stretch until June of 2020--so conceivably the entire four years of the Trump presidency DACA would remain in effect, even though the president wants to stop it. This is a fairly big decision for the court."