by CHQ Staff
Multiple establishment media outlets are reporting that White House officials have told key Republican leaders on Capitol Hill that President Trump is open to cutting a deal in an upcoming spending bill to protect young immigrants from deportation in exchange for border wall funding, according to four GOP officials briefed on the talks.
This possible change in policy would be a significant cave-in for Trump, who, as The Washington Post’s Mike DeBonis and Josh Dawsey remind us, in January insisted on a much broader package of immigration restrictions in exchange for any protections for the so-called “dreamers” – the illegal aliens brought to the United States illegally as children, some of whom have been protected under Obama’s unconstitutional Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program that Trump rightly canceled in September.
The immigration framework that Trump issued in January called for $25 billion in wall funding, alongside changes to immigration law that would curtail two key pathways for legal immigrants by ending the Diversity Immigrant Visa Program, which distributes 50,000 visas a year through a lottery system, and by scaling back family-based immigration rules. In exchange, Trump proposed offering legal status and an eventual pathway to citizenship for up to 1.8 million dreamers, going well beyond those protected under DACA noted DeBonis and Dawsey.
Reductions in legal immigration have been key elements of immigration reform for conservative Republicans on Capitol Hill, where Trump allies such as Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) and members of the House Freedom Caucus called the restrictions an important element in moving toward an America First “merit-based” immigration system.
Plus, Trump’s insistence on his entire immigration reform package forced the Democrats into a losing political corner where they killed all the Senate immigration bills, and any relief for DACA recipients, allowing Trump to hammer them for ignoring the plight of DACA recipients and American workers.
The purported offer of a three-year extension of the DACA program in exchange for three years of wall funding, attributed to “a GOP official” would throw away the political advantage gained in the previous immigration debate and moot the court cases that are moving in Trump’s direction.
It is unclear whether House conservatives would back a narrower deal report DeBonis and Dawsey. But it may not matter: Congressional leaders do not expect many of the principled limited government constitutional conservative in the House to vote for any spending bill, let alone one that would extend protections for dreamers without major new immigration restrictions.
Speaker Ryan promised, before his election as Speaker, that he would not bring to the floor any bill on immigration unless it was supported by a majority of House Republicans. That should guarantee that the Democrats cannot get a vote on any of their bills, especially a bill legalizing the illegal aliens covered by DACA.
A recent FedUp PAC poll found that 95% of conservatives taking the poll say that Ryan should be deposed as Speaker if Democrats succeed in passing their preferred DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) amnesty.
However, if Trump caves on a short term DACA fix, Ryan may break that promise and bring up a bill supported by all Democrats, a few Republicans and President Trump.
As CHQ Chairman Richard A. Viguerie said after the GOP’s abysmal showing in the PA-18 special congressional election, “The GOP’s abysmal results in the Pennsylvania Special Congressional Election were entirely predictable. To maintain or grow their majorities Republican must field high-energy candidates who will run as conservatives, nationalize the election, and brand the Democrats as the Party of Nancy Pelosi: Far Left radicals who want open borders, amnesty for illegal aliens, higher taxes, abortion on demand, more government and regulation, and who are weak on national defense and the war on terror, and wrong on the cultural issues.”
We can think of no better way to destroy what little enthusiasm grassroots conservatives have for Republican congressional candidates (see PA-18 results) than to pass a DACA amnesty coupled with a trillion and a half dollar spending bill.
President Trump must resist the urge to do a deal and back DACA legislation decoupled from the rest of the conservative immigration reform agenda unless he wants to make Nancy Pelosi Speaker of the House and mire the remainder of his presidency in Democrat-led investigations and impeachment hearings.
We urge CHQ readers and friends to contact the White House. Tell President Trump unless he wants to make Nancy Pelosi Speaker of the House there should be no DACA legislation decoupled from the rest of the conservative immigration reform agenda.