DACA sessions Trump

Janet Napolitano: Here’s Why I’m Suing The Trump Administration

"I recognize that it is unusual for a former Cabinet official to sue the agency she once led. It may be even more unusual to challenge as unconstitutional, unjust and unlawful the elimination of a program originally established by the plaintiff — me — in this litigation."


By Janet Napolitano for the LA Times

As secretary of the Department of Homeland Security, a little more than five years ago I signed the directive that created the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program. On Tuesday, President Trump ended DACA on little more than a whim. On Friday, in my capacity as president of the University of California, I filed a lawsuit in federal court seeking to prevent the government from stripping DACA recipients of their ability to live, study and work in our country free from fear of deportation.

By definition and practice, DACA recipients were brought to the United States when they were children. They know no other country other than the one we share. They pay taxes. They contribute to our economy — nearly 55% of them have bought cars, 12% have bought homes and 6% have launched businesses that create jobs for U.S. citizens. They seek to serve in our military and better themselves through education. In all ways except one, they are American.

I recognize that it is unusual for a former Cabinet official to sue the agency she once led. It may be even more unusual to challenge as unconstitutional, unjust and unlawful the elimination of a program originally established by the plaintiff — me — in this litigation.

My anger at DACA’s rescission doesn’t stem from pride in the work done to create this program, although I am very proud of the program. Instead it is motivated by the harm that eliminating DACA will cause to the so-called Dreamers at the University of California, the 10-campus system I now lead, and to the nearly 800,000 Dreamers across our country.

As UC president, I’ve seen the exceptional contributions Dreamers are making to the nation. They represent the very best of our country. All DACA recipients have gone through a rigorous application process that verifies they are productive members of our communities and have clean records, including more than 100,000 who have had their applications renewed by the Trump administration.

Yet the Department of Homeland Security, in rescinding DACA, baselessly claims that the program was unlawful. It offers no rationale based on the merits of DACA itself, but rather on the purported illegality of a separate program with different rules and aimed at different immigrants (the parents of DACA-eligible young people), a program that never went into effect. That justification is flat out wrong. The DACA program was a legal exercise of the department’s prosecutorial discretion and no court has found DACA to be invalid.

In fact, in 2014, the Department of Justice office that reviews the constitutionality of executive branch actions determined that DACA was lawful. Now the Trump administration’s DOJ offers no reasoned analysis for its about-face.

The Administrative Procedure Act prohibits federal agencies from acting in an arbitrary and capricious manner, but that is exactly what Homeland Security has done in its rescission of DACA. It has entirely failed to consider the reliance interest of the Dreamers, such as their expectation that they could study, work and live in the only country they know, or if the program ends, what will happen to the communities and universities where DACA recipients thrive.

Finally, the department’s rescission of DACA tramples on the due process rights of the University of California and its students and employees. DHS cannot take away those rights by executive fiat.

The Trump administration’s action harms DACA recipients from a legal perspective and harms our country from a moral perspective. The government is telling these young people that , as a country, we do not value their obvious worth, and that we intend to treat them no differently than a recent adult border crosser. This is wrong, unjust, mean and legally dubious.

As president of the University of California, it is my job to protect the students on our campuses. As the author of DACA, I know its legal basis and its aims. As both, I am suing the administration because its actions on Tuesday will harm innocent young people and, by extension, all of us.


10 comments on “Janet Napolitano: Here’s Why I’m Suing The Trump Administration

  1. It’s your job to educate them, not to protect them from deportation. It was unconstitutional for Obummer to create DACA. Blah-blah Janet. Hopefully, the right sues everything that the left does when they are in charge. They should have sued when DACA was created.

    • Would you mind elaborating on your claim that DACA was/is unconstitutional? I’m interested in hearing more about your legal argument.

      • Whether DACA is Constitutional or Unconstitutional is irrelevant. In 2014, Obama tried to expand DACA, but was rebuffed by rebelling states and court rulings.
        It was created by Presidential fiat after years of failure in Congress to pass legislation accomplishing in law the same thing.

        Part of the risk one runs when ramming policy thru by order and not legislation is that it can rammed back. Trump, like it or not, has thrown this back to where it should have been hashed out to begin Congress.

        Obama..and now all before have miserably failed with dealing with illegal immigration. I refuse to use the term implies that someone just left their papers at home and its just a matter of handing them in to the proper authorities. There needs to be a very clear and defined path to citizenship or worker status for those who don’t want to become US citizens.

        Illegals should pay for the process..not me or any other US taxpayer. They will then have the pride and relief that comes from being in a place they are welcome
        and will, in most cases, help get rid of the freeloaders who are not paying the price.

        Napolitano is a self serving twit who has continuously abused her Office at UC
        and is, like all Bureaucrats, only concerned about her own skin.

        Dreams are only handed out when people are asleep..we need to wake up and develop a real policy and a path. People in Silicon Valley would drown in their own spit if immigrants weren’t there to do every nasty, lousy job.

  2. It was OK for O Bummer to exceed his authority while establishing DACA, but wrong for Trump to correct the mess DACA poses. Interesting. Typical leftie logic.

    • If the Obama administration overstepped their legal authority by establishing the DACA program as you claim, won’t judicial review of the issue confirm your view and prevent similar executive overreach in the future?

  3. Jack, you certainly are a disgusting example of an American. Your problem is that your level of intelligence and accomplishment is far below the average DACA recipient and you don’t even understand what you are arguing against.

    And I really am not sure where Anonymous stands on this but prior discussions with Anonymous were laughable and very unimpressive.

    I say to Janet Napolitano – GOOD FOR YOU! and I bet she has many millions who support her!

    • And you’re a fine example of a disgusting liberal. I know exactly what I am arguing against.

      • So you know Ivanka and Eric Trump were (may still be?) registered Democrats. So was the trump himself before he decided the republicans were probably far more stupid and he might have a better chance at fooling all them to squeeze his plump ass into the oval office. Turns out, he was Right. no pun intended. sure. So, exactly what are you arguing against? Please tell us.

  4. Somebody needs to stand up for those being persecuted.

    The 9 th Circuit just just slammed the original replacement ban.

    Janet you’re up to bat.

    As a veteran, it didn’t matter to me as a Caucasian which ethnic minority had my back.

    Jack, wacky up and smell the coffee bro, mostly all of our forefathers were immigrants who gave us the places we now reside.

    Look at what the dreamers who preceded these Dreamers made in the 200 years we have been here!

    If you can’t accept progress then I feel for you.

    Just don’t be caught trying to force feed a free people.

    • Viet Vet

      They are not being persecuted. Nice try. My mom followed the rules and waited in line for over 5 years. Breaking the law is not progress. Waky off Vet.

Speak On It

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Skip to toolbar