In only a few weeks, the states that sued successfully to stop President Obama’s illegal DAPA Act have threatened to turn their judicial wrath on the former president’s first controversial immigration order: DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals). While neither order was particularly popular with conservatives – to say the least – DACA has thus far benefitted from a much better public relations campaign. Republican moderates have been in favor of extending the program, which grants a form of amnesty for nearly 800,000 illegal immigrants who came to this country as minors. Even President Trump, who is one of the most hardline immigration Republicans to ever sit in the Oval Office, has expressed willingness to work with these so-called “DREAMers.”
As such, he’s using them to negotiate with Democrats over his impending border security funding measures.
So far, Democrats have signaled that they are not willing to come to the table. Having already said that Trump’s infamous WALL is out of the question, they are now publicly shaming the president for trying to use the carrot of the Dreamers as a way of opening negotiations. On Tuesday, both Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi released statements refusing to consider the possibility.
“Dreamers are not a bargaining chip for the border wall and inhumane deportation force,” wrote Schumer. “Period.”
“It is reprehensible to treat children as bargaining chips,” said Pelosi. “America’s DREAMers are not negotiable.”
Odd that Pelosi and Schumer would take this line, since Trump is offering to SAVE the Dreamers. By refusing to budge, these Democrats are essentially saying, “Well, it’s more important for us to stand against the wall than it is to save these poor, defenseless illegal immigrant children we pretend to care so much about…oh well.”
When and if these Dreamers head back to Mexico on a U.S. Deportation bus, they’ll have only themselves to blame.
And that’s a significant possibility. If the ten states now threatening to file suit against DACA do so, the case will likely be decided by the same U.S. District Court judge who put a halt to DAPA in 2015. Judge Andrew Hanen made no secret of his disgust with the Obama administration’s federal overreach in that case, and most experts believe that he’ll rule similarly on the president’s earlier executive order.
Stephen Legomsky, who was chief counsel at U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services when the Obama administration launched DACA, said Hanen’s “extreme, extreme hostility” to Obama’s 2014 executive actions on immigration “was a matter of public record.”
“If Judge Hanen allows them to tack on a DACA challenge, no doubt he will enjoin DACA,” said Legomsky, now a law professor at Washington University in St. Louis. “It is more difficult to disrupt an ongoing successful program. … All that said, given the judges they’re likely to have, I think they have a very tough challenge.”
Trump is giving Democrats a chance to put DACA on the books and make it law. All he wants in return is funding for the wall – the wall that, no doubt on earth about it, the American people voted for when they voted for Donald J. Trump.
Illegal immigration has, in a very real sense, already cost the Democrats two elections straight. Will they make it a third? Or will they finally turn around and realize that they have been following an extremist agenda that the majority of Americans do not support?