President Trump made a border wall between the U.S. and Mexico one of his campaign’s promises, and while the issue has repeatedly been kicked down the road, it appears that the President will pull out all the stops in order to get funding for a border wall, including offering to protect undocumented immigrants.
The White House asked Congress for $18 billion dollars for a border wall, to go along with a laundry list of other hard-line immigration policies like “money to hire 10,000 additional immigration officers, tougher laws for those seeking asylum, and denial of federal grants to so-called ‘sanctuary cities.'”
The wish list was delivered to Congress Friday, and shockingly, is an exact copy of a list of policies Democrats called a “non-starter” in October during other efforts to strike a bipartisan immigration deal in order to protect DACA recipients, leading many to suspect that this latest Trump administration effort could also derail bipartisan discussions.
“President Trump has said he may need a good government shutdown to get his wall,” Sen. Dick Durbin said in a statement. “With this demand, he seems to be heading in that direction.”
Durbin continued, “it’s outrageous that the White House would undercut months of bipartisan efforts by again trying to put its entire wish-list of hard-line anti-immigrant bills—plus an additional $18 billion in wall funding—on the backs of these young people.”
The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals Program, started by the Obama administration in 2012, protected about 780,000 when it was enacted. In September, President Trump shut the program down and gave Congress six months to come up with an alternate policy. Sen. Durbin is currently working with four other Senators, three of whom are Republican, on a deal that will protect DACA while also beefing up border security, but it appears Trump’s demands could stall talks.
(Via New York Times)