President Trump took to Twitter on Thursday to warn the country that Democrats were refusing to negotiate on a deal to protect Obama’s so-called DREAMers from deportation. Having laid out his clear demands for a DACA bill, Trump hinted at the now-obvious fact that the Democrats are more interested in preserving DACA as a campaign issue than they are about providing these illegal immigrants with actual legislative relief.
The Trump administration scrapped Obama’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals executive order in September under considerable legal pressure from several states that threatened to sue the federal government. The Justice Department, under Jeff Sessions, determined that the same problems that caused Obama’s later order – DAPA – to fall would likely bring the first order down as well. As such, Sessions informed the president that his agency would decline to defend the DACA order in court. This led Trump to roll back the order and tell Congress that they had a six month window to come up with a legislative fix.
“March 5th is rapidly approaching and the Democrats are doing nothing about DACA,” Trump tweeted. “They Resist, Blame, Complain and Obstruct—and do nothing. Start pushing Nancy Pelosi and the Dems to work out a DACA fix, NOW!”
As for the president, he has sent mixed messages about his intentions when it pertains to the Dreamers. On the campaign trail, he promised voters that there would be no amnesty for any illegal immigrants until his administration had brought border crossings down to zero. He suggested that illegal immigrants currently in the country would have to go back home and return through legal channels if they wanted to secure a path to citizenship.
At the same time, he said many times that he had a soft spot in his heart for the children of illegal immigrants who had arrived as minors. Last month, he said he was open to a path to citizenship for those covered by the DACA order…but only if Democrats met his demands. For their part, Democrats have recoiled from those demands, which include full funding for a border wall, sharp restrictions to chain migration, and an end to the Diversity Visa Lottery. Some went as far as to smear the White House as pursuing a “white supremacist” agenda and using the Dreamers as bargaining chips.
To be sure, Trump has nothing to lose and everything to gain in these negotiations. Democrats behave as though failure to come up with DACA protection will somehow hurt the president politically, but there’s no evidence that Republican voters care all that much. Even those that support amnesty see it as an issue of limited concern. Meanwhile, Democrats have promised over and over again that they would not let these young men and women fall to the risk of deportation. Now they’ve decided that the fate of potential, would-be immigrants is just as important for some reason. Thus, their true colors have been magnificently exposed.