LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) — The California Attorney General is preparing for a showdown Tuesday in the U.S. Supreme Court — the outcome of which could decide the fate of 700,000 DACA recipients.
Justices will hear arguments on the DACA program, which protects undocumented people who were brought to the U.S. illegally when they were children. President Trump wants to end that program and California is fighting back hard to save it.
California A.G. Xavier Becerra’s legal team will lead the arguments of behalf of DACA recipients Tuesday.
“We take our historic fight to the Supreme Court to defend the DACA program,” he said at a news conference.
“This fight is about protecting the doctors, the teachers, the innovators in the tech community — all those people who are out there doing great things for America and happen to be Dreamers,” Becerra continued.
The issue before the Supreme Court is not whether President Trump can legally end the DACA program, but rather, whether he has offered a legitimate reason to do so.
Legal observers will keep an eye on Chief Justice John Roberts, who is expected to be the swing vote.
One out of every four DACA recipients live in California. José Flores told CBS2/KCAL9’s Randy Paige he was brought to the U.S. with his sister.
At a Catholic church in North Hollywood, where people gathered to support those affected, he recalled early memories of his family’s move.
“We were told we were coming to Disneyland,” he said. “It was a longer trip than expected.”
Flores has since graduated from U.C. Berkeley and dedicated much of his young adult life to helping at-risk children. His life is among the hundreds of thousands that could change, pending the outcome of the case. Sitting next to José at the gathering Monday night was Isaac Cuevas, Director of Immigration Affairs for the Los Angeles Archdiocese.
” … We have a tremendous opportunity in allowing this amazing group of young, aspirational Americans to be a part of the fabric of this country,” he said.
Robert Sinners, with the D.C. Young Republicans, said however the court rules, it will motivate voters on both sides.
“It is an emotional issue. And that inspires people, especially on the left, to be involved in politics,” Sinners said. “It is a national security issue, especially for Republicans,” he continued. “We have to have a count of who is in the country.”
For Flores, however, it’s about counting on a promise made to him and other Dreamers seven years ago: he and others like him would be allowed to state in the country they call home.
“I do [love this country]. I am an American. I have known that ever since. And I’m just hoping to still be able to be here,” he said.
The decision is expected to come down sometime next summer.