Associated Press and Wire Reports
WASHINGTON (AP) — The Trump Administration is phasing out the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. DACA is an American immigration policy founded by the Obama administration in June 2012. DACA allows certain illegal immigrants who entered the country as minors, to receive a renewable two-year period of deferred action from deportation and eligibility for a work permit.[/caption]
The White House says it wants Congress to come up with a plan to replace the program the Trump administration is phasing out, which shields young immigrants from deportation.
White House spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders says President Donald Trump wants to see “responsible immigration reform” from Congress. She says it should also include controlling the U.S. border, improved vetting and enforcing immigration laws.
The administration is giving Congress six months to come up with a legislative fix before the government stops renewing permits for people covered by the program.
Idaho Gov. C.L. “Butch” Otter and Rep. Raul Labrador issued statements following the announcement.
“I appreciate the Attorney General’s recognition of the constitutional problems with the Obama administration’s executive action,” Otter said. “I also support the Department of Homeland Security’s decision to phase out the DACA program in a way that will minimize the impact on current DACA beneficiaries. In the meantime, I call on Congress to redouble its efforts to restore the effectiveness of and public confidence in our nation’s immigration system.”
Rep. Labrador applauded the decision, saying that the creation of DACA in the first place was illegal.
“I have consistently opposed DACA because it’s an unconstitutional program that undermines the rule of law,” said Rep. Labrador. “President Obama did not have the authority to create DACA; only Congress could establish such a program. I applaud President Trump for respecting the Constitution and keeping a campaign promise. Through his action today, President Trump is creating leverage for larger immigration reform, which should include border wall funding and stronger interior enforcement. As Chairman of the Immigration and Border Security Subcommittee, I will continue working with my colleagues and the Administration on fixing all aspects of our broken immigration system.”
Mexico says it “deeply regrets” the Trump administration’s decision to phase out a program that shields young immigrants from deportation, and the Mexican government is urging U.S. lawmakers to pass a replacement.
The Foreign Relations department says in a statement that “it is undoubtedly the sole responsibility of U.S. citizens and their institutions to determine U.S. immigration policy … but in the current situation, the Mexican government has a moral imperative to act.”
The department said Tuesday that Mexico would provide legal defense services for any of its citizens affected by the decision. The department said of the young immigrants, dubbed “Dreamers,” that Mexico “will receive with open arms any dreamers who return.”
President Trump is defending his decision to phase out a program protecting young immigrants from deportation, saying he is giving Congress a “window of opportunity” to act.
Trump is stressing in a statement that he is “not going to just cut DACA off, but rather provide a window of opportunity for Congress to finally act.”
The program created by former President Barack Obama has given nearly 800,000 young immigrants a reprieve from deportation and the ability to work legally in the country.
Trump says he is not in favor of punishing children for the actions of their parents.
But he says: “Young Americans have dreams too.”