Judge Orders Trump Administration To Turn Over DACA Emails

Roque Planas

The Trump administration must turn over all emails and memos used to make its decision to phase out Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, the 2012 program created to protect undocumented youths from deportation, a federal judge ruled Tuesday.

If the communications between the White House and the departments of Justice and Homeland Security are made public, it could offer a window into the political machinations behind the Trump administration’s abrupt call to torpedo DACA.

The order is part of an ongoing lawsuit brought by several parties in the Northern District of California in an effort to overturn the Trump administration’s decision last month to rescind the program.

The Trump administration left DACA in place for months, even after scrapping rules that conflicted with the president’s immigration priorities in February and after canceling an Obama administration program in June that would have shielded the undocumented parents of U.S. citizens from deportation. That program, known by its acronym, DAPA, was never implemented due to a legal challenge led by the state of Texas.

But U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced Sept. 5 that the White House would end the DACA program, arguing that a looming legal threat, again led by the state of Texas, would likely result in the courts declaring the program unconstitutional. Immigrant rights groups and many prominent Democrats criticized that logic, noting that the program had hummed along for five years without legal challenge.

Trump’s about-face on DACA was widely viewed as a triumph of immigration hard-liners in his administration, including Sessions, who viewed the program as unconstitutional.

Lawyers representing the administration have already supplied the court with a series of documents explaining their rationale for nixing DACA.

But U.S. District Judge William Alsup noted that lawyers representing the federal government in oral arguments had acknowledged they rescinded DACA with input from the White House. “Despite this, defendants have failed to provide even a single document from any White House officials or staff,” the decision reads.

The documents supplied by the Trump administration also failed to include any communications with subordinates of Acting Homeland Security Secretary Elaine Duke, who might have helped shape the decision to end DACA. “It strains credulity to suggest that the Acting Secretary of DHS decided to rescind a program covering 800,000 enrollees without consulting one advisor or subordinate within DHS,” the ruling says.

Alsup ordered the Trump administration to also provide similar documents that informed Kelly’s decision to leave the DACA program intact in February, when he canceled the Obama administration’s deportation priorities.

The Trump administration has been ordered to hand the documents over to the court by Oct. 27.

Five lawsuits challenging the Trump administration’s decision to kill DACA filed in the Northern District of California were consolidated into one. That lawsuit includes the one filed by a coalition of states led by California Attorney General Xavier Becerra (D) and another filed by Janet Napolitano, the secretary of homeland security in the Obama administration.

Separate lawsuits challenging the end of DACA were also filed in New York.

The lawsuits typically argue that the White House violated the Administrative Procedure Act when it canceled the program, resulting in a due process violation.

Also on HuffPost

Ashton Kutcher

Ashton Kutcher spoke out onstage as host of the 23rd annual Screen Actors Guild Awards on Jan. 29, 2017. His remarks came just two days after President Donald Trump signed an executive order barring citizens of seven Muslim-majority nations from entering the United States for three months.<br /><br />"Everyone in airports that belong in my America! You are part of the fabric of who we are, and we we love you and we welcome you."
Ashton Kutcher spoke out onstage as host of the 23rd annual Screen Actors Guild Awards on Jan. 29, 2017. His remarks came just two days after President Donald Trump signed an executive order barring citizens of seven Muslim-majority nations from entering the United States for three months.

"Everyone in airports that belong in my America! You are part of the fabric of who we are, and we we love you and we welcome you."

Julia Louis-Dreyfus

Julia Louis-Dreyfus during the 23rd annual Screen Actors Guild Awards spoke out about how she was "horrified" by the immigrant ban, being the child of an immigrant herself.<br /><br />"I am American patriot. I love this country and because I love this country, I am horrified by its blemishes. And this immigrant ban is a blemish and it is un-American."
Julia Louis-Dreyfus during the 23rd annual Screen Actors Guild Awards spoke out about how she was "horrified" by the immigrant ban, being the child of an immigrant herself.

"I am American patriot. I love this country and because I love this country, I am horrified by its blemishes. And this immigrant ban is a blemish and it is un-American."

Alyssa Milano

Alyssa Milano took to Twitter to support her friends. <br /><br />"My best friend Alaa Mohammad Khaled is Muslim His parents were Palestinian refugees His brother is DJ Khaled RefugeesWelcome"
Alyssa Milano took to Twitter to support her friends.

"My best friend Alaa Mohammad Khaled is Muslim His parents were Palestinian refugees His brother is DJ Khaled RefugeesWelcome"

Taylor Schilling

Taylor Schilling with the cast of "Orange is the New Black" during the 23rd Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards.<br /><br />"We stand up here representing a diverse group of people, representing generations of families who have sought a better life here, We know that it's going to be up to us and all of you to keep telling stories. What united us is stronger than the forces that seek to divide us."
Taylor Schilling with the cast of "Orange is the New Black" during the 23rd Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards.

"We stand up here representing a diverse group of people, representing generations of families who have sought a better life here, We know that it's going to be up to us and all of you to keep telling stories. What united us is stronger than the forces that seek to divide us."

Kerry Washington

Kerry Washington wears a safety pin during the 23rd annual Screen Actors Guild Awards.<br /><br />"I’ll be wearing one of these tonight. On my arm. To show solidarity. We will not stop fighting for our safety & the safety of our fellow citizens and human beings. Actors are activists, no matter what, because we embody the worth and humanity of all people."
Kerry Washington wears a safety pin during the 23rd annual Screen Actors Guild Awards.

"I’ll be wearing one of these tonight. On my arm. To show solidarity. We will not stop fighting for our safety & the safety of our fellow citizens and human beings. Actors are activists, no matter what, because we embody the worth and humanity of all people."

George Takei

George Takei posted on Twitter, sharing an article that made people think about the immigration ban. He wrote, "I hope we're all paying attention." 
George Takei posted on Twitter, sharing an article that made people think about the immigration ban. He wrote, "I hope we're all paying attention." 

Dev Patel

Dev Patel stopped on the red carpet to speak out during the 23rd annual Screen Actors Guild Awards.<br /><br />"I've just flown in from India and to fly into what was a nightmare, to realize that this is actually happening right now in the world, in a country where I live, it's heartbreaking. The first thought that came in my head was just thousands of children and mothers and young fathers that have turned up to these shores with hope, and they're being swatted away. It's just so divisive and negative and wrong. It's scary, it's really scary."
Dev Patel stopped on the red carpet to speak out during the 23rd annual Screen Actors Guild Awards.

"I've just flown in from India and to fly into what was a nightmare, to realize that this is actually happening right now in the world, in a country where I live, it's heartbreaking. The first thought that came in my head was just thousands of children and mothers and young fathers that have turned up to these shores with hope, and they're being swatted away. It's just so divisive and negative and wrong. It's scary, it's really scary."

Seth Rogen

Seth Rogen took to Twitter sharing where a protest was being held. 
Seth Rogen took to Twitter sharing where a protest was being held. 

Sophia Bush

Sophia Bush took to Twitter in support of human rights. <br /><br />She later tweeted, “Bravo to the courts. At least some folks in charge adhere to the Constitution. #NoHate #NoFear #RefugeesAreWelcomeHere.”
Sophia Bush took to Twitter in support of human rights. 

She later tweeted, “Bravo to the courts. At least some folks in charge adhere to the Constitution. #NoHate #NoFear #RefugeesAreWelcomeHere.”

Sarah Paulson

Sarah Paulson addressed the ban during the 23rd annual Screen Actors Guild Awards.<br /><br />“I would like to make plea for everyone, if they can, any money they have to spare please donate to the ACLU to protect the rights and liberties of people across this country.”
Sarah Paulson addressed the ban during the 23rd annual Screen Actors Guild Awards.

“I would like to make plea for everyone, if they can, any money they have to spare please donate to the ACLU to protect the rights and liberties of people across this country.”

David Harbour

David Harbour addresses the ban while accepting an award for "Stranger Things" during the SAG Awards.<br /><br />"Now, as we act in the continuing narrative of 'Stranger Things,' we 1983 Midwesterners will repel bullies, we will shelter freaks and outcasts, those who have no home. We will get past the lies, we will hunt monsters. And when we are at a loss amidst the hypocrisy and the casual violence of certain individuals and institutions. We will, as per Chief Jim Hopper, punch some people in the face when they seek to destroy the weak, the disenfranchised and the marginalized!"
David Harbour addresses the ban while accepting an award for "Stranger Things" during the SAG Awards.

"Now, as we act in the continuing narrative of 'Stranger Things,' we 1983 Midwesterners will repel bullies, we will shelter freaks and outcasts, those who have no home. We will get past the lies, we will hunt monsters. And when we are at a loss amidst the hypocrisy and the casual violence of certain individuals and institutions. We will, as per Chief Jim Hopper, punch some people in the face when they seek to destroy the weak, the disenfranchised and the marginalized!"

Mark Ruffalo

Mark Ruffalo shared on social media what he really thought about the immigration ban. 
Mark Ruffalo shared on social media what he really thought about the immigration ban. 

Mahershala Ali

Mahershala Ali during the 23rd annual Screen Actors Guild Awards.<br /><br />"When we get caught up in the minutiae and the details that make us all different, I think there's two ways of seeing that. There's the opportunity to see the texture of that person, the characteristics that make them unique, and then there's an opportunity to go to war about it and say that this person is different from me, I don't like you, let's battle."
Mahershala Ali during the 23rd annual Screen Actors Guild Awards.

"When we get caught up in the minutiae and the details that make us all different, I think there's two ways of seeing that. There's the opportunity to see the texture of that person, the characteristics that make them unique, and then there's an opportunity to go to war about it and say that this person is different from me, I don't like you, let's battle."

Miley Cyrus

Miley Cyrus shared a multicolored image about standing alongside immigrants in the United States.
Miley Cyrus shared a multicolored image about standing alongside immigrants in the United States.

Michael Moore

Michael Moore took to Twitter in outrage.<br /><br />"To our Muslim neighbors in the world: I & tens of millions of others are so very sorry. The majority of Americans did not vote 4 this man."
Michael Moore took to Twitter in outrage.

"To our Muslim neighbors in the world: I & tens of millions of others are so very sorry. The majority of Americans did not vote 4 this man."

Emma Stone

Emma Stone also addressed the ban during the SAG Awards.<br /><br />“We have to speak up. Staying silent only helps the oppressor, not the victim. Right now I hope that people seeing things that are being done that are unconstitutional and inhumane would say something."
Emma Stone also addressed the ban during the SAG Awards.

“We have to speak up. Staying silent only helps the oppressor, not the victim. Right now I hope that people seeing things that are being done that are unconstitutional and inhumane would say something."

Lily Allen

Singer Lily Allen took to social media to express her opinion about the immigration ban, calling it "a heinous act."
Singer Lily Allen took to social media to express her opinion about the immigration ban, calling it "a heinous act."

Simon Helberg and Jocelyn Towne

Simon Helberg and Jocelyn Towne brought a sign to the 23rd annual Screen Actors Guild Awards.
Simon Helberg and Jocelyn Towne brought a sign to the 23rd annual Screen Actors Guild Awards.

Mira Sorvino

In February 2017, an appeals court decided against Donald Trump's proposed travel ban.<br /><br />Actress Mira Sorvino tweeted after court ruling, saying, “Thank God!!And TY to all the judges, and lawyers and citizens who protested! This is our America! #nomuslimban #lovenothatemakesamericagreat.”
In February 2017, an appeals court decided against Donald Trump's proposed travel ban.

Actress Mira Sorvino tweeted after court ruling, saying, “Thank God!!And TY to all the judges, and lawyers and citizens who protested! This is our America! #nomuslimban #lovenothatemakesamericagreat.”

Albert Brooks

After the appeals court ruling, Albert Brooks tweeted: “Looks like the appeals court is not getting that Ivanka Trump gift basket.”
After the appeals court ruling, Albert Brooks tweeted: “Looks like the appeals court is not getting that Ivanka Trump gift basket.”

Denzel Washington

Denzel Washington is seen backstage at the SAG Awards.<br /><br />“I think we as Americans better learn to unite, We need to put our elected officials’ feet to the fire and demand that they work together or they won’t get back into office."
Denzel Washington is seen backstage at the SAG Awards.

“I think we as Americans better learn to unite, We need to put our elected officials’ feet to the fire and demand that they work together or they won’t get back into office."

Rob Reiner

Rob Reiner took to Twitter after the Immigration Ban became public. 
Rob Reiner took to Twitter after the Immigration Ban became public. 

Kumail Nanjiani

"Silicon Valley's" Kumail Nanjiani tweeted: "As someone who was born in Pakistan I can tell you coming into America is VERY difficult. A #Muslimban accomplishes nothing but hate."
"Silicon Valley's" Kumail Nanjiani tweeted: "As someone who was born in Pakistan I can tell you coming into America is VERY difficult. A #Muslimban accomplishes nothing but hate."

Emmy Rossum

Emmy Rossum shared on Twitter, "Refugees are FLEEING TERROR. They are not terrorists. #muslimban."
Emmy Rossum shared on Twitter, "Refugees are FLEEING TERROR. They are not terrorists. #muslimban."

Love HuffPost? Become a founding member of HuffPost Plus today.

This article originally appeared on HuffPost.