White House Releases Immigration Proposals For 'Dreamers' Deal

Angelica Greene
October 10, 2017

WASHINGTON (AP) - President Donald Trump has told congressional leaders that his hard-line immigration priorities must be enacted in exchange for extending protection from deportation to hundreds of thousands of young immigrants, many of whom were brought to the US illegally as children. Democrats already have said numerous White House's terms are off the table. Passing a DACA fix is a top priority for Democrats, but they won't go along with Trump's long list of demands, meaning what once seemed like a bipartisan compromise in the works now looks more like another legislative standoff.

White House legislative director Marc Short reportedly said in a conference call that they ask for the priorities included in any deal for DACA.

The framework also calls for transforming legal immigration by implementing a points-based merit system for awarding green cards.

Regarding border security, Trump reiterated his proposal to construct a wall along the U.S. -Mexico border, which has been one of his most prominent campaign promises.

Since Trump took office in January, his fellow Republicans have failed to repeal and replace former Democratic President Barack Obama's Affordable Care Act, known as Obamacare, and a White House plan for tax reform needs more support. Politico also noted two White House officials said the administration sees its immigration principles as an opening bid for an eventual DACA deal that may look dramatically different from the demands laid out Sunday evening.

"We are not interested in granting citizenship", a White House official said. This proposal fails to represent any attempt at compromise. Though none of them is framed as a veto threat, they represent conservative positions that skeptics of DACA have insisted ought to be part of any deal to provide legal status to those brought to the US illegally. It goes on to describe many more extreme immigration restrictions, including putting new limits on asylum claims, making it easier to quickly send unaccompanied minors who cross the border back to their home countries, requiring employers to use the E-Verify employment verification system, and blocking "sanctuary cities" from receiving certain federal grants.

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Trump has given Congress six months to find a replacement for the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program. He vowed repeatedly that Mexico would pay for the wall, but began prodding Congress earlier this year to approve funding.

The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, or DACA, which has protected almost 800,000 young adult unauthorized immigrants from deportation and allowed them to work legally since 2012. "If the president was serious about protecting the Dreamers, his staff has not made a good faith effort to do so".

As the administration laid out its policy requirements over the weekend, according to journalist Andrew Joyce, undocumented activists vowed to sends hundreds of thousands of young people to "shut down" Washington if lawmakers can not come up with a proposal to protect young undocumented people without punishing the rest of the immigrant community.

The exact same scene played out in September's budget negotiations: Trump demanded funding for a wall.

Needless to say, this was met with outrage on Capitol Hill and is also expected to upset the tech giants.

Other reports by GizPress

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