President Trump has called on the Congress to legalize DACA. The call came later on Tuesday barely hours after the President and his administration had announced a plan to repeal DACA, an amnesty program for people who came into the US as minors illegally.
DACA is an executive order from the Obama administration and attorney general Jeff Sessions had announced the proposed repeal on what he said was on principle and constitutional grounds. Sessions said that the unilateral executive amnesty had contributed to a surge in the number of unaccompanied minors that were entering the country from the US southern border.
But that’s not all.
Sessions added that because of this surge, a humanitarian crisis has been created. The AG also said that the influx of these minors had denied thousands of Americans jobs which were now going to illegal immigrants. The attempt to repeal DACA has come under sharp criticism from the Democratic Party as well as other voices in the press. The proposed repeals are looking to roll back a number of things that are now covered under DACA.
Trump and his administration had hoped that the proposed repeal would be included as part of a broad legislative package on immigration. The President tweeted that he was looking for bipartisan support for immigration reforms that according to him would put hard working American citizens first. It should be remembered that getting rid of DACA was a key campaign promise from the President.
On Tuesday, Trump called on Congress to legalize the amnesty program. In a tweet sent late evening, Trump noted that Congress had 6 months to legalize DACA or he would revisit the issue.
Many analysts feel that the President appears to have adopted an argument that has been fronted by some Republicans that indeed the substance of DACA as a program is not an issue. What really raises concerns is that the program was initiated unilaterally by President Obama through an executive order instead of legislation through Congress.
It will be interesting to see though how Trump’s base will respond to this. Part of the reason why the President has become quite popular in his base has been due to his constant promise of putting Americans first.
The President had promised drastic immigration policies during the campaign including the removal of DACA. Analysts believe that there might be a backlash from Trump supporters on this whether it’s passed by Congress or affirmed through a presidential executive order.
To put this into context, just before the announcement, conservative commentator Ann Coulter said in a tweet that passing DACA will not sit well with the President’s supporters. She noted that if the amnesty program is passed, the millions of people who voted for Trump will not vote for him again. Coulter also noted that these people may as well not vote Republicans in the future. The ball is now on Congress and it will be interesting to see how things will play out in the coming days.