As part of the temporary budget proposal that passed last week, the Senate promised to take up immigration reform. Today, Trump announced a compromise plan. He will allow up to 1.8 million dreamers to stay in the US.
The price is $25 billion for a wall, and other restrictions. Some on the far Right and many on the Left have ridiculed the plan.
President Trump’s immigration proposal to Congress will include a path to citizenship for an estimated 1.8 million young undocumented immigrants, White House officials said Thursday, more than twice the number of “dreamers” who were enrolled in a deferred action program Trump terminated last fall.
The figure represents a significant concession to Democrats but is likely to produce sharp blowback among conservative Republicans. The White House cast the move as one piece of an immigration framework that would significantly tighten border control laws.
Trump’s plan, which will be formally sent to the Senate on Monday, also includes a $25 billion “trust fund” for a border wall and additional security upgrades on both the southwest and northern U.S. borders. And the president will propose significant curbs to legal immigration channels, restricting the ability of U.S. citizens to petition for visas only for spouses and minor children and ending categories for parents and siblings. Both of those provisions are likely to engender fierce objections among liberal Democrats.
- Criticism from the Right: Breitbart News calling the president “Amnesty Don” in a headline Thursday.
- Criticism from the Left: “This is going to be dead on arrival. We are going to oppose it fiercely,” said Frank Sharry, executive director of America’s Voice, an immigrant rights organization. “We are going to expect every Democrat to oppose it. And the idea that they are going to exploit the desperation of Democrats and dreamers to take a wrecking ball to the Statue of Liberty is a non-starter.”
Trump Played Cards Well
Like it or not, Trump played his cards pretty well on this.
The Republicans will live up to their promise of addressing immigration reform before a final budget is approved.
Compared to his prior (albeit purposely extreme position) Trump will double the number of immigrants from his previous proposals.
There will likely be more modifications in favor of the Left.
Trump will get his Wall.
- Anything that gets criticism from the far Right and far Left cannot be all bad.
- The problem with the wall is that it attacks a symptom of a problem. Illegals come here for free benefits. Is the problem illegal aliens or is the problem free benefits, free education, free healthcare, etc.?
- Kicking out millions of productive immigrants who have been here since they were kids is absurd, immoral, and is economically unsound.
- Can the plan be better? Nearly anything can be better simply by ignoring extreme positions on both sides. I expect plan improvements, quite an optimistic position. I could be wrong.
- Democrats will be forced to take some compromise, not necessarily the exact one Trump proposed. The alternative is the "nuclear option" of limiting debate in the Senate based on 51 votes, not 60.
- No one is going to get everything they want. I am pleased with that aspect even though I am certain I will object to some parts of the final compromise.
Mike "Mish" Shedlock