Press Release

October 7, 2019
Cardin, Van Hollen, Congressional Leaders File Bipartisan Amicus Brief in Support of DACA in The Supreme Court

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Ben Cardin and Chris Van Hollen (Both D-Md.), together with 49 senators and 123 U.S. Representatives and former lawmakers have filed a bipartisan amicus brief in the Supreme Court in support of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.  The Supreme Court will hear arguments on DACA on November 12, 2019.  President Trump terminated the DACA program on September 5, 2017, throwing the lives of nearly 800,000 Dreamers into chaos.

“DACA recognizes that we should not hold hardworking, innocent children responsible for the actions of their parents. These children have mostly known no other homeland than the United States of America. They are Americans in every way other than immigration status and I hope the Supreme Court can recognize these facts,” said Senator Cardin. “The DACA program and Dreamers prove that it is possible to be both fair and compassionate, and that this country is best when we insist on being both.”

“Dreamers were brought to America as children and grew up pledging allegiance to our flag. America is the country they know and they contribute to our communities in countless ways. But President Trump’s cruel decision to end the DACA program has thrown their lives into turmoil. I urge the Supreme Court to end this uncertainty and uphold the DACA program, allowing these bright men and women to succeed and pursue the American dream,” said Senator Van Hollen.

“President Trump’s claim that the law made him take away DACA’s protections is completely false,” said Elizabeth Wydra, President of Constitutional Accountability Center, which filed the brief on behalf of Members of Congress. “President Trump knows DACA is incredibly popular—and that devastating the families of DACA recipients draws righteous outrage—so he wants the Supreme Court to do his dirty work and say he had no choice but to end DACA.  The question now is whether Chief Justice Roberts will follow the law and stand up to President Trump.”

Cardin and Van Hollen both are cosponsors of the Dream Act. In June, the House passed the American Dream and Promise Act of 2019.  This legislation will establish a path to citizenship for Dreamers and immigrants with Temporary Protected Status (TPS) or Deferred Enforced Departure (DED), whose protections President Trump has also ended.  Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) has refused to allow a debate or vote on the bill for more than 100 days. For the past two years, President Trump rejected at least six different bipartisan proposals to solve the DACA crisis that he created.

Along with Cardin and Van Hollen, the amicus brief is also signed by Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL), Chuck Schumer (D-NY), Patrick Leahy (D-VT), Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), Patty Murray (D-WA), Ron Wyden (D-OR), Jack Reed (D-RI), Tom Carper (D-DE), Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), Maria Cantwell (D-WA), Bob Menendez (D-NJ), Bernie Sanders (I-VT), Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Bob Casey (D-PA), Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), Jon Tester (D-MT), Tom Udall (D-NM), Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), Mark Warner (D-VA), Jeff Merkley (D-OR), Michael Bennet (D-CO), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), Joe Manchin (D-WV), Chris Coons (D-DE), Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), Brian Schatz (D-HI), Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), Chris Murphy (D-CT), Mazie Hirono (D-HI), Martin Heinrich (D-NM), Angus King, Angus (I-ME), Tim Kaine (D-VA), Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Ed Markey (D-MA), Cory Booker (D-NJ), Gary Peters (D-MI), Tammy Duckworth (D-IL), Maggie Hassan (D-NH), Kamala Harris (D-CA), Catherine Cortez Masto (D-NV), Tina Smith (D-MN), and Jacky Rosen (D-NV), as well as former Senators Gary Hart (D-CO), Carl Levin (D-MI), Harry Reid (D-NV), and Mark Udall (D-CO).

In the U.S. House of Representatives, the amicus brief is signed by Representative Zoe Lofgren (D-CA-19), along with U.S. Representatives Jerry Nadler (D-NY-10), Joaquin Castro (D-TX-20), Nancy Pelosi (D-CA-12), Steny Hoyer (D-MD-05), Jim Clyburn (D-SC-06), Colin Allred (D-TX-32), Pete Aguilar (D-CA-31), Nanette Barragán (D-CA-44), Karen Bass (D-CA-37), Don Beyer (D-VA-08), Earl Blumenauer (D-OR-03), Anthony Brown (D-MD-04), Julia Brownley (D-CA-26), Salud Carbajal (D-CA-24), Tony Cárdenas (D-CA-29), Andre Carson (D-IN-07), Sean Casten (D-IL-06), Kathy Castor (D-FL-14), Judy Chu (D-CA-27), David Cicilline (D-RI-01), Gil Cisneros (D-CA-39), Yvette Clarke (D-NY-09), Steve Cohen (D-TN-09), Lou Correa (D-CA-46), Jim Costa (D-CA-16), TJ Cox (D-CA-21), Jason Crow (D-CO-06), Elijah Cummings (D-MD-07), Danny Davis (D-IL-07), Susan Davis (D-CA-53), Peter DeFazio (D-OR-04), Diana DeGette (D-CO-01), Rosa DeLauro (D-CT-03), Suzan DelBene (D-WA-01), Val Demings (D-FL-10), Mark DeSaulnier (D-CA-11), Ted Deutch (D-FL-22), Eliot Engel (D-NY-16), Veronica Escobar (D-TX-16), Anna Eshoo (D-CA-18), Adriano Espaillat (D-NY-13), Dwight Evans (D-PA-03), Bill Foster (D-IL-11), Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI-02), Ruben Gallego (D-AZ-07), John Garamendi (D-CA-03), Sylvia Garcia (D-TX-29), Jesus “Chuy” Garcia (D-IL-04), Jimmy Gomez (D-CA-34), Al Green (D-TX-09), Raúl Grijalva (D-AZ-03), Deb Haaland (D-NM-01), Josh Harder (D-CA-10), Jahana Hayes (D-CT-05), Katie Hill (D-CA-25), Jared Huffman (D-CA-02), Sheila Jackson Lee (D-TX-18), Pramila Jayapal (D-WA-07), Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY-08), Hank Johnson (D-GA-04), Bill Keating (D-MA-09), Ro Khanna (D-CA-17), Dan Kildee (D-MI-05), Brenda Lawrence (D-MI-14), Barbara Lee (D-CA-13), Andy Levin (D-MI-09), John Lewis (D-GA-05), Ted Lieu (D-CA-33), Alan Lowenthal (D-CA-47), Nita Lowey (D-NY-17), Doris Matsui (D-CA-06), Betty McCollum (D-MN-04), Donald McEachin (D-VA-04), Jim McGovern (D-MA-02), Jerry McNerney (D-CA-09), Gregory Meeks (D-NY-05), Grace Meng (D-NY-06), Gwen Moore (D-WI-04), Grace Napolitano (D-CA-32), Joe Neguse (D-CO-02), Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC-DE), Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY-14), Jimmy Panetta (D-CA-20), Scott Peters (D-CA-52), Mark Pocan (D-WI-02), Katie Porter (D-CA-45), Ayanna Pressley (D-MA-07), Mike Quigley (D-IL-05), Jamie Raskin (D-MD-08), Kathleen Rice (D-NY-04), Cedric Richmond (D-LA-02), Harley Rouda (D-CA-48), Lucille Roybal-Allard (D-CA-40), Bobby Rush (D-IL-01), Linda Sánchez (D-CA-39), Jan Schakowsky D-IL-09), Adam Schiff (D-CA-28), Brad Schneider (D-IL-10), José Serrano (D-NY-15), Albio Sires (D-NJ-08), Adam Smith (D-WA-09), Darren Soto (D-FL-09), Greg Stanton (D-AZ-09), Eric Swalwell (D-CA-15), Mark Takano (D-CA-41), Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS-02), Dina Titus (D-NV-01), Rashida Tlaib (D-MI-13), Norma Torres (D-CA-35), Juan Vargas (D-CA-51), Filemon Vela (D-TX-34), Nydia Velázquez (D-NY-07), Peter Welch (D-VT), and John Yarmuth (D-KY-03), and former Representatives Charles Gonzalez (D-TX-20), Elizabeth Holtzman (D-NY-16), Ray LaHood (R-IL-18), Constance Morella (R-MD-08), Claudine Schneider (R-RI-02), David Skaggs (D-CO-02), Peter Smith (R-VT), and Henry Waxman (D-CA-33).

Full text of the amicus brief is available here.