Congressional Republicans have warned their liberal colleagues that Trump’s take on a new deal for ‘Dreamers’ might be less sympathetic than they’d been led to believe.
Politico reports that top-ranking lawmakers in the GOP said the commander-in-chief detailed a vision of what he wants Congress to do in exchange for leniency on DACA recipients.
House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) said he met with Trump and argued that increased border wall funding should be part of any legislation on the future of Dreamers. According to McCarthy, the president agreed with him – a revelation that runs counter to the promises Trump made last month.
Democrats had thought they’d struck a deal with President Trump to protect Dreamers from deportation without having to worry too much about inter-party politics.
Despite having campaigned to break up DACA soon after taking office, Trump seemingly changed his mind several months into his tenure. Saying he had a “big heart,” the president assured Dreamers that they could rest easy with him in the White House.
Nevertheless, Trump discarded the program after eleven conservative attorneys general threatened to launch a lawsuit against the federal government over DACA’s supposed illegitimacy.
Now the president wants border wall funding to protect Dreamers – and, said another GOP senator, a reform bill that’d limit the scope of DACA only to former recipients, rather than the broader circle of undocumented minors and youth.
“The president was very clear. Any effort to codify DACA needs to, one, be limited to DACA so the first criteria under the law should be you have a DACA permit today,” said Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR) in a Tuesday interview. “Second, any deal has to end chain migration. And then third, it ought to include some kind of enhanced measures, whether it’s on the border or interior enforcement or whatever have you.”
The president had supposedly struck a deal with House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) at a dinner last month. Trump had apparently agreed to sign off on a bill that would have included some basic border security measures for a revised Dream Act.
“If the president is changing his view, he should tell us. I’ve talked to the president, I’ve talked to Gen. [John] Kelly, about continuing on the path that we all agreed to indisputably,” said Schumer on Tuesday. “If they want to continue on that path, great. If they want to back off, let them tell us.”