The dream is dead, or so some on the left would have you believe. In the wake of President Trump’s decision to overturn President Obama’s illegal executive order, the left has gone nuts. As have their puppets in the mainstream media who would have you believe that the mass deportations have begun.
In June 2012, the Obama administration through Executive Order created the Deferred Action for Childhood Arivals program (DACA). The program was meant and has shielded millions of young illegal children from being deported once their temporary green cards or work visas expired.
However, the program was probably unconstitutional and designed to do an end-run around Congress. Remember, Obama never addressed Immigration Reform when Democrats controlled Congress in 09-010 and by the time he showed any interest in it he was facing a hostile GOP Congress.
So What Exactly Was Wrong With DACA?
The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA as it is more popularly known, was an Executive Order issued by then President Barack Obama in 2012 following the failure of Congress to achieve any meaningful immigration reform.
Under DACA those who were brought illegaly by their parents but who met the following criteria were allowed to remain within the United States, provided they applied once every two years for continued, “DREAMER” status:
Came to the United States before their 16th birthday
- Have lived continuously in the United States since 15 June 2007
- Were under age 31 on 15 June 2012
- Were physically present in the United States on 15 June 2012, and at the time of making their request for consideration of deferred action with USCIS
- Had no lawful status on 15 June 2012
- Have completed high school or a GED, have been honorably discharged from the armed forces, or are enrolled in school
- Have not been convicted of a felony or serious misdemeanors, or three or more other misdemeanors, and do not otherwise pose a threat to national security or public safety
Lest we forget DACA has already been through the Courts. It did not do so well. The Fifth Circuit ruled against the administration and numerous states had threatened to take it back to the Supreme Court (initial ruling split 4-4) with a fifth conservative jurist now seated.
During the campaign last year, Donald Trump echoed he wanted to end the program but do so with “heart.” Well, on Tuesday, the President ended the program but delayed enforcement of the repeal of DACA for an “undisclosed period of time.” Before Tuesday, many were expecting him to end the program with a six-month delay but this gives the President more flexibility. Indeed, it’s likely this language was used to indicate even after the six-month deadline had ended it is unlikely deportations will start en masse immediately afterwards
By ending the program but giving Congress time to act Trump is actually obeying the Constitution. He is giving Congress time to work and act. Republican leadership probably would have preferred the President keep DACA, as hypocritical as it is, because they had already reaped the benefits of campaigning against it and feel they do not have time to touch immigration reform with everything else on their plate this year.
Too bad. The role of Congress is to craft and pass legislation the President then signs and enforces. To be fair to Congressional Republicans, they have been mulling immigration reform ideas around for awhile. Senator Thom Tillis (R-NC) has a bill that would allow DREAMers to stay and eventually become citizens. Congressman Carlos Curbelo (R-FL) has a similar bill that would be more comprehensive in nature and not just impact DREAMers.
Indeed, after White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee and Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced the winding down of the program, the President reiterated Congress’s role by stating, “It is now time for Congress to act!” The fact is that President Trump’s decision to end DACA and push the issue on to Congress is, contrary to the hysterical media’s take on it, an incredibly compassionate move. DACA left thousands of so-called, “DREAMers” hanging in legal limbo. Constantly requiring that they re-apply for residency once every two years rather than offering them a permanent legal status.
The President further iterated, “As I’ve said before, we will resolve the DACA issue with heart and compassion — but through the lawful democratic process — while at the same time ensuring that any immigration reform we adopt provides enduring benefits for the American citizens we were elected to serve,” Trump said. “We must also have heart and compassion for unemployed, struggling and forgotten Americans.”
Of course, the GOP Caucus is deeply split on immigration. While leadership in both chambers might favor keeping these children of illegals in the country, the rank and file do not necessarily agree. Crafting legislation to appeal to various interests, even if limited, will take time.
None of this changes the fact, however, that President Trump had every right to rescind DACA as Commander-in-Chief and in turn ask Congress to fix it. That is the Constitutional thing to do. Thanks to President Trump, that’s likely to change and many are likely to finally feel safe in their own country.