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WBAL: Maryland joins DACA lawsuit against Trump administration

09.11.2017

Updated: 3:16 PM Sep 11, 2017

Maryland has joined California, Maine and Minnesota in filing a lawsuit against the Trump administration over its decision to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, Maryland Attorney General Brian Frosh announced Monday.

The four states filed the suit in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, arguing that the Trump Administration violated the Constitution and federal laws when it rescinded DACA, according to a statement.

In the complaint, the state attorneys general describe "several violations by the federal government of the Constitution and federal laws designed to ensure that our government treats everyone fairly and transparently."

According to Frosh's office, the complaint alleges:

  • The Trump Administration’s termination of DACA and the associated Department of Homeland Security (DHS) memo and FAQs may lead to the untenable outcome that the Administration will renege on the promise it made to Dreamers and their employers that information they gave to the government for their participation in the program will not be used to deport them or prosecute their employers. The risk DACA grantees face is compounded by DHS’s earlier imposition of boundless enforcement “priorities” that sweep in most immigrants. The threatened misuse of sensitive information provided in good faith by DACA grantees to the government is fundamentally unfair, violating the Fifth Amendment’s due process guarantee.
  • The federal Regulatory Flexibility Act also requires the government to analyze the effects of a proposed change on small businesses, many of which are owned by, or employ, Dreamers, and to take comments on the proposed change. The Administration completely ignored these legal requirements.
  • The termination of DACA directly affects the substantive rights of almost 800,000 people and indirectly affects millions more, as well as small and large businesses, non-profits, and the towns, cities and states that these individuals call home. The federal Administrative Procedure Act requires such a change to be made for sound reasons, and for the public to be able to make formal comments on it before it’s made into law. Whether or not the initiative was implemented through notice and comment rulemaking, it cannot be terminated without it.

In July, Frosh joined 20 attorneys general in sending a letter to President Donald Trump, urging him to maintain and defend DACA.