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DACA Goes To Court: Through The Eyes Of A DREAMer

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Utah Statesman
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Students protest President Trump's decision to end DACA in 2017.

Alfonso Reyna Rivarola has been paying for your social security, and he wants to keep it up. 

Rivarola was born in Peru, but grew up in Salt Lake City after his parents brought him to the United States. He received DACA protection thanks to a program that started under President Barack Obama. This allowed Rivarola to work and go to school legally, and pay the government just like the rest of us.

“We are actively contributing to the tax base, we are actively contributing to the social security, but we don’t get to access any of that,” he said.

Rivarola is now the director of the Dream Center at the University of Utah. He kept a close eye on the Supreme Court yesterday as it listened to arguments about whether or not the program he has relied on will continue. Trump administration lawyers argued that the program is unconstitutional, but that even if it is legal, President Trump has the right to dismantle it anyway.

President Trump previously said DACA recipients, commonly referred to as DREAMers, were safe under him, but solicitor general Noel Francisco told the court that the administration owns its decision to cancel DACA protections. 

And that’s what worries Rivarola.

“It was definitely heavy, I think that’s the best way I can sum it up. There is so much uncertainty. I think today was very monumental for our community, even though no decisions were made, a lot happened today.

The court is expected to make a decision by the summer, right when the presidential race is heating up.