“NO MORE DACA DEAL!”
This is the message Donald Trump sent from his Mar-a-Lago resort Sunday one hour after he wished us all “Happy Easter.”
In a series of tweets, the president spewed, often in all caps, about “ridiculous” and “dumb” immigration laws.
His first in that series stated the following:
“Border Patrol Agents are not allowed to properly do their job at the Border because of ridiculous liberal (Democrat) laws like Catch & Release. Getting more dangerous. ‘Caravans’ coming. Republicans must go to Nuclear Option to pass tough laws NOW. NO MORE DACA DEAL!”
But “Catch and Release” is not a law; it is a term immigration officials use for the practice of allowing immigrants not deemed security risks to remain at large so detention center space is available for those who might pose risks.
The Trump administration has claimed the policy ceased when Trump took office, but this is not the case. As immigration court case backlogs climb into the hundreds of thousands, detention centers still practice it.
Trump canceled the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) last fall.
That did not stop him from blaming Democrats, though. To the traveling press pool, Trump said:
“A lot of people are coming in because they want to take advantage of DACA. They had a great chance. The Democrats blew it.”
People are not coming in because “they want to take advantage of DACA.” No one who arrived in the United States after June 15, 2012 is eligible. Immigrants must have already have been here since 2007, arrived in the country before age 16, and had to have been younger than 31 before the June 2012 deadline.
The president once expressed a willingness to show “great heart” with DACA, going so far as to encourage bipartisan legislation only to later dismiss it with his “shithole countries” comment. He then reached out to Congress to protect dreamers from deportation in exchange for funding his campaign-promised wall along the U.S.-Mexico border, but rejected proposals from congressional Democrats.
Fox & Friends aired a segment on Sunday titled “CARAVAN OF ILLEGAL IMMIGRANTS HEADED TO U.S.”
No wonder Trump then claimed later that day:
“Mexico has got to help us at the border. . . . They flow right through Mexico; they send them into the United States. It can’t happen that way anymore.”
Yesterday, Trump followed with more tweets about Mexico’s need to exercise “absolute power” in blocking immigrants from crossing its borders presumably enroute to the United States.
“Mexico has the absolute power not to let these large ‘Caravans’ of people enter their country. They must stop them at their Northern Border, which they can do because their border laws work, not allow them to pass through into our country, which has no effective border laws…..”
“Congress must immediately pass Border Legislation, use Nuclear Option if necessary, to stop the massive inflow of Drugs and People. Border Patrol Agents (and ICE) are GREAT, but the weak Dem laws don’t allow them to do their job. Act now Congress, our country is being stolen!”
He also tweeted:
“DACA is dead because the Democrats didn’t care or act, and now everyone wants to get onto the DACA bandwagon… No longer works. Must build Wall and secure our borders with proper Border legislation. Democrats want No Borders, hence drugs and crime!”
Rep. Don Beyer (D-Va.) points to the president’s tweets as evidence of his racial bias toward immigrants.
“The mask of deceptions and lies with which Trump has tried to gaslight the country for months just fell away: ‘no more DACA deal.’ His true position was always anti-immigrant.”
Drew Hammill, spokesman for House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), said:
“Time and time again, the president has walked away from bipartisan proposals that are exactly what he asked for. When an agreement to protect the Dreamers is reached, it will be despite this president rather than with his leadership.”