The U.S. Commission on Civil Rights condemned President Trump's decisions to rescind the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program and pardon former Maricopa County, Ariz., Sheriff Joe Arpaio.
Both condemnations by the commission — which is a bipartisan, independent federal agency — were made by majority vote.
The decision to end DACA "is a step backward for our country, which draws its strength from the valuable social and economic contributions from all members of society," the commission wrote in a statement Friday.
Earlier this week, the Trump administration decided to end the DACA program, first instituted by the Obama administration in 2012, putting nearly 800,000 young illegal immigrants in jeopardy of deportation.
Commission Chairperson Catherine Lhamon did not mince words in condemning pardoning Arpaio, who was convicted of criminal contempt of court in July.
"The President's pardon of Sheriff Arpaio damages the fabric of our nation by condoning — from law enforcement — deliberate, flagrant violation of a court order specifically to protect fundamental constitutional principals. The federal courts fulfilled their obligation to protect and uphold civil rights, and it is anathema to the fair administration of justice for the President to dismiss that judgement," Lhamon, who was appointed by former President Barack Obama, said.
Arpaio was pardoned by Trump on Aug. 25.