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Federal appeals court considering fate of DACA

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Texas lawyers on Wednesday argued in a federal appeals court in New Orleans how the Deferred Action for Childhood arrivals program is costing state taxpayers. But, some argue DACA recipients give a financial boost to the economy.

Andrea Rathbone Ramos, a DACA recipient, says the solution to the current state of legal limbo many DACA recipients have felt for years is to create laws to legalize the immigration status of nearly 611,000 immigrants who were brought to the U.S. illegally as children.

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"I think that there's a huge misconception that undocumented immigrants can just apply and get in this imaginary line,” Ramos said. “But the reality is that immigration policy is more complicated than that." Ramos is also a part of the American Business Immigration Coalition.

She argues that DACA recipients give back to the Texas economy every day. According to a study from Democrats on the Small Business Committee, removing DACA workers from the Texas economy would mean a $6.2 billion loss in GDP. Lawyers in court representing Texas see it differently.

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For now, only current DACA recipients can renew their work permits. Since July of last year, a federal judge in Houston blocked any new applications into the program.

Also a year ago in July, Texas Republican Sen. John Cornyn sent a letter to Illinois Democratic Sen. Dick Durbin, urging him to consider a bill that would offer permanent legal status for so-called Dreamers, which would likely include proposals related to border security and employment verification programs.

It's unclear if this case will reach the Supreme Court, but in previous descent from the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans, the three justices have already indicated that DACA is unlawful.

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