WASHINGTON — Shortly after the Supreme Court ruled President Donald Trump can't end legal protections for 650,000 young immigrants, the president accused the nation's highest court of making "horrible" and "politically charged decisions" that are "shotgun blasts into the face" of people who call themselves conservatives.
In Thursday's 5-4 ruling, Chief Justice John Roberts and the court's four liberal justices rejected the Trump administration's arguments that the eight-year-old Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals Program, commonly referred to as DACA, is illegal.
Before weighing in himself, the president retweeted a quote from the dissenting opinion, where Justice Clarence Thomas wrote that the DACA decision was "an effort to avoid a politically controversial but legally correct decision."
Thursday's ruling was the second big liberal victory at the court this week, following Monday's ruling that it's illegal to fire people because they're gay or transgender. In Monday's ruling, Justice Neil Gorsuch, one of Trump's conservative appointees, was joined in the majority by Chief Justice John Roberts and the court’s four liberal members. Justice Brett Kavanaugh, Trump’s other Supreme Court pick, dissented, along with Justices Samuel Alito and Clarence Thomas.
The president claimed on Twitter Thursday that these decisions are "hotgun blasts into the face of people that are proud to call themselves Republicans or Conservatives." Trump, who on Saturday is set to hold his first campaign rally of the COVID-19 era, then encouraged his followers to "Vote Trump 2020!"
He later tweeted, "Do you get the impression that the Supreme Court doesn't like me?"
DACA covers people who have been in the United States since they were children and are in the country illegally. In some cases, they have no memory of any home other than the U.S.
The program grew out of an impasse over a comprehensive immigration bill between Congress and the Obama administration in 2012. President Barack Obama decided to formally protect people from deportation while also allowing them to work legally in the U.S.
But Trump made tough talk on immigration a central part of his campaign and less than eight months after taking office, he announced in September 2017 that he would end DACA.
On Twitter, Obama celebrated the Supreme Court ruling and encouraged his Twitter followers to vote for Joe Biden for president.
"Eight years ago this week, we protected young people who were raised as part of our American family from deportation. Today, I'm happy for them, their families, and all of us," Obama tweeted.