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Border Wall Must Be Part of DACA Deal

14 January 2018, 03:45 | Casey Mitchell

Border Wall Must Be Part of DACA Deal

Donald Trump. US President

President Trump faced widespread condemnation Friday for reportedly referring to Haiti, El Salvador, and African nations as "shithole countries" during an immigration meeting with senators Thursday.

When Republican senators pressed him on what deal he would be willing to sign into law to protect DACA recipients, he at first sidestepped the question then later asserted that he would ratify whatever Congress agreed upon.

For all the ongoing negotiations, groups, and proposals related to the expiring Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, senior Republicans in both chambers have shifted gears fully to the idea that the government will need to be funded on January 19 without a DACA solution.

Trump gave Congress six months to find a way to allow immigrant approved for the DACA program to remain in the USA permanently. The legislation would also provide a 12-year path to citizenship for most DACA participants. But once you get past the "love" there are some major sticking points.

The bill tackles the issue of the future of the 690,000 youths, known as "Dreamers", who came to the USA when they were children and were permitted to stay under former President Barack Obama's Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) programme, which was established in 2012 and suspended by the Trump administration in September 2017. Democrats strongly oppose funding any such wall. But the administration's calls for a little over 300 miles of new border structures, plus upgrades to about 400 miles of barriers already built or approved. Trump still wants his border wall, though he's toned down what that means. And on Thursday, with major help from allies in the White House, Cotton got a clear win. Asked if this group would be helpful, he said, "Too early to tell". The White House denied those comments.

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He's been vocal about wanting to deal with DACA before tackling the arduous task of immigration reform.

The lawsuit was brought against the Trump administration by the Regents of the University of California system and its president, Janet Napolitano.

But Rep. Ruben Gallego, D-Ariz., who was not there and like Cuellar is a member of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, said he favored a narrow bill protecting Dreamers with perhaps something negotiable on border security. If we listen to the Ann Coulters of the world we're going nowhere. Mike Lee, R-Utah, "for voting NO on a spending bill that did not include a Dream Act". Robert Menendez, the New Jersey Democrat. They are more and more hostile to deportation, which is to say to enforcing USA immigration laws.

The talks also include changes to the visa lottery program and family-based migration.

But some of those issues will likely have to wait due to the sense of urgency running through these discussions. Republicans say it's just a recognition of their very complicated reality. "[House Speaker Paul] Ryan has never put an immigration bill on the floor". Under Alsup's ruling, renewal applications must still be accepted, giving those approved another two years from the new date of their application approval. "You know? We're people with our own stories", said Villalobos as he listened.

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While she's hopeful, she's also fearful of an unpredictable future.

President Donald Trump lashed out Wednesday at a federal judge who's temporarily blocked him from ending protections for almost 800,000 young immigrants. The Justice Department has vowed to defend the rescission in court.

And in an interview with the Wall Street Journal, Trump backed away from remarks he made on Tuesday in which he said he could eventually consider legislation providing a pathway to citizenship for the 11 million undocumented immigrants estimated to be in the United States.

But for now, all eyes are on a DACA deal.

Several lawmakers expressed disappointment and disgust, with Republican Sen.

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"If they're going to be trying to add the extra aspects of security and the lottery process and all of that, I don't foresee there being a DACA bill passed by March", said Villalobos. The ruling, which is certain to be appealed, also said the government does not have to accept applications from those not now covered by DACA.



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