Rice expert available to discuss upcoming Supreme Court decision on DACA


Jeff Falk

Amy McCaig

Rice expert available to discuss upcoming Supreme Court decision on DACA

HOUSTON – (June 17, 2020) – As the U.S. Supreme Court prepares to issue a ruling on the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, Rice University’s Tony Payan, the Françoise and Edward Djerejian Fellow for Mexico Studies and director of the Center for the United States and Mexico at Rice’s Baker Institute for Public Policy, is available for comment.

Photo credit: Baker Institute

Tony Payan. Photo credit: Baker Institute

DACA, which was established in 2012 and allowed nearly 800,000 undocumented residents who were brought into the U.S. as children to stay, study and work in the country, did not constitute permanent residence or a path to citizenship — it simply granted relief to those affected, Payan said.

“Since the program was established, DACA has proven a valuable mechanism to improve the lives of many of these residents and their families,” he said. “Thanks to the benefits granted by the program, they have been able to go to college, obtain legal employment, increase their incomes, serve in the military, etc.”

The program was former President Barack Obama’s response to Congress’ inability to pass immigration reform, but it has been controversial from the beginning, as many of its critics argue immigration is the exclusive realm of the legislative branch, Payan said.

“The Supreme Court’s decision is likely to make an important difference not only for the beneficiaries of this program, but also for their employers, schools and families,” he continued. “It will also establish the limits of what the executive branch can do in terms of immigration and put additional pressure on Congress to deal with immigration. Thus, it is likely to be of enormous political and policy significance, in addition to constituting a decision of profound consequences to the lives of hundreds of thousands and even millions of people.”

For more information or to schedule an interview with Payan, contact Jeff Falk, director of national media relations at Rice, at 612-964-7236 or jfalk@rice.edu.


This news release can be found online at news.rice.edu.

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Photo link: https://www.bakerinstitute.org/media/files/expert/74c266c5/tony-payan-thumb.jpg

Photo credit: Baker Institute

Located on a 300-acre forested campus in Houston, Rice University is consistently ranked among the nation’s top 20 universities by U.S. News & World Report. Rice has highly respected schools of Architecture, Business, Continuing Studies, Engineering, Humanities, Music, Natural Sciences and Social Sciences and is home to the Baker Institute for Public Policy. With 3,962 undergraduates and 3,027 graduate students, Rice’s undergraduate student-to-faculty ratio is just under 6-to-1. Its residential college system builds close-knit communities and lifelong friendships, just one reason why Rice is ranked No. 1 for lots of race/class interaction and No. 4 for quality of life by the Princeton Review. Rice is also rated as a best value among private universities by Kiplinger’s Personal Finance.

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About Amy McCaig

Amy is a senior media relations specialist in Rice University's Office of Public Affairs.