On Thursday, November 8, the Ninth Circuit Court in California left in place a nationwide injunction keeping the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program alive. The Court, responding to an action led by the California Attorney General Xavier Becerra, found that former President Barack Obama’s creation of the program was a legitimate exercise of executive discretion

A three-judge panel of the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, based in San Francisco, ruled unanimously in favor of a lower court’s preliminary injunction against the administration’s attempt to phase out DACA.

Last year the President announced his intention to end DACA in March of this year. That action drew immediate legal challenges. In February, a federal judge in New York blocked the administration from ending DACA and in April, a third federal judge, in Washington, D.C., also ruled against the administration. This is the first ruling by an appellate panel of three judges.

Before this latest ruling the Justice Department asked the U.S. Supreme Court to intervene and bypass the appellate panel by reviewing the three previous lower level rulings blocking the administration’s plan to terminate DACA. The Supreme Court has not responded to that request. Most observers anticipate that the Supreme Court will ultimately decide the program’s fate.