Biden Slams Trump for 'Un-American' Attack on DACA After SCOTUS Ruling

Joe Biden, the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee, hit out at President Donald Trump over his administration's efforts to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program on Tuesday. The comments came after the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced that it would not be fully reopening the program, after the Supreme Court deemed its efforts to end DACA unlawful.

"After failing at the Supreme Court, the Trump Administration took another cruel step in its misguided crusade to repeal DACA," Biden said in a statement released on Tuesday.

"President Trump will stop at nothing to push his anti-immigrant political agenda, even at the expense of young people who have grown up in this country and are Americans through and through," he said.

Earlier in the day, the DHS announced that it would only be allowing existing beneficiaries of DACA, which lets people brought to the U.S. without documentation as children to live and work in the country without fear of deportation, to extend their coverage for one year while the government reviews the program.

In the interim, the DHS said it would be rejecting first-time DACA applicants.

The announcement came more than a month after the Supreme Court ruled to block the Trump administration's efforts to end the program after finding that the government had not followed the correct protocol in ending DACA.

With the DHS indicating that the Trump administration still plans to find a way to shut DACA down, Biden accused the government of continuing its "un-American" bid to "upend the lives of hundreds of thousands."

"Trump's actions would upend the lives of hundreds of thousands of our neighbors, teachers, nurses, doctors, engineers and lawyers, among others," the former vice president warned, with more than 750,000 people estimated to rely on DACA.

"It's wrong, and it's un-American," Biden said. "The America I know fights for our own and that's exactly who DACA recipients are—our own."

Noting that nearly a third of all current DACA recipients are estimated to be essential workers, with close to 30,000 of those frontline healthcare workers, Biden said: "It's unconscionable that the Trump Administration has continued its attacks on DACA recipients, especially while our country is battling COVID-19 and many of these young people are risking their lives to keep us safe and healthy."

"This November, voters must reject the politics that play with the lives of immigrant young people and jeopardize public health to divide families and rip apart communities," Biden said.

Under his administration, the Democrat said, "I will protect Dreamers and their families and offer a roadmap to citizenship for Dreamers and all 11 million undocumented immigrants enriching our country, so they no longer have to live in fear and uncertainty. "

"In a Biden Administration, Dreamers can make plans to prosper and thrive here in America—right where they belong."

In a statement released on Tuesday, House Judiciary Committee Chair Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) and Immigration and Citizenship Subcommittee Chair Zoe Lofgren (D-CA) also condemned the DHS's announcement, asserting that "rather than using the Supreme Court's DACA decision as an opportunity to do what's right, the Trump Administration has chosen to take a first step towards revoking DACA protections and placing Dreamers at risk of deportation.

"Given the current national crisis, the President could have chosen the path of compassion and grace. Instead, he chose further uncertainty and chaos, they said.

"The vast majority of Americans—including most of Republicans—support protecting Dreamers from deportation," the lawmakers noted. "And more than a year ago, the House of Representatives passed the American Dream and Promise Act to provide certainty and stability to this deserving group of young people."

"Majority Leader McConnell should join the right side of history and immediately take up and pass this critical legislation," they urged. "We cannot afford to wait any longer."

Joe Biden
Presumptive Democratic presidential nominee former Vice President Joe Biden delivers a speech at the William Hicks Anderson Community Center, on July 28, 2020 in Wilmington, Delaware. Biden hit out at the Trump administration's continued efforts to end DACA on Tuesday. Mark Makela/Getty