September 5th, 2017

Trump to Congress on DACA: the ball’s in your park now

Take a look:

I am here today to announce that the program known as DACA that was effectuated under the Obama administration is being rescinded,” Attorney General Jeff Sessions said Tuesday at the Justice Department…

In a statement after his agencies and attorney general announced the decision, President Donald Trump blamed former President Barack Obama for creating the program through executive authority and urged Congress to come up with a solution.

“It is now time for Congress to act!” he said.

Trump said that winding down the program would be more considerate than letting the courts end it, but emphasized he stands by his “America First” agenda.

“As I’ve said before, we will resolve the DACA issue with heart and compassion — but through the lawful Democratic process — while at the same time ensuring that any immigration reform we adopt provides enduring benefits for the American citizens we were elected to serve,” Trump said. “We must also have heart and compassion for unemployed, struggling and forgotten Americans.”

The administration also announced a plan to continue renewing permits for anyone whose status expires in the next six
months, giving Congress time to act before any currently protected individuals lose their ability to work, study and live
without fear in the US.

That strikes all the correct notes—not that it will matter to Trump’s critics on the left, who will say he’s heartless and cruel, and on the right, some of whom will say he passed the buck to a worthless GOP Congress that is no different than the Democrats. To me, the correct notes that were struck include first and foremost the idea that this should be a Congressional function and that Obama overstepped. Other good notes are the postponement of the effects of the announcement, the compassionate consideration of the very real problems around the situation that “Dreamers” face, and the setting of a deadline of sorts by which Congress needs to act.

It’s that last part that worries me. What will Congress actually do? My hope is that they manage to find a middle ground that substantially reduces and tightens the categories of persons allowed to stay and work here.

Let’s take as a starting point the Obama-era DACA eligibility provisions:

—are under 31 years of age as of June 15, 2012;
—came to the U.S. while under the age of 16;
—have continuously resided in the U.S. from June 15, 2007 to the present. (For purposes of calculating this five year period, brief and innocent absences from the United States for humanitarian reasons will not be included);
—entered the U.S. without inspection or fell out of lawful visa status before June 15, 2012;
—were physically present in the United States on June 15, 2012, and at the time of making the request for consideration of deferred action with USCIS;
—are currently in school, have graduated from high school, have obtained a GED, or have been honorably discharged from the Coast Guard or armed forces;
—have not been convicted of a felony offense, a significant misdemeanor, or more than three misdemeanors of any kind; and
—do not pose a threat to national security or public safety.

The new bill could—just as an example—change the requirements to state that the age of entry would have to have been younger (12, for example, instead of 16). It could tweak any of the dates of numbers to make them more restrictive. It could (and absolutely should, IMHO) add an English language proficiency requirement. Allowing people to stay here who came here illegally as children and lived here virtually their entire lives, and who are well-assimilated into this country and its culture and mores, seems like a decent (although flawed) compromise in a tough situation. And yes, it does send a message that if you somehow get here, even if illegally, and stay here illegally, your child will be allowed official status and be allowed to work. This constitutes a troubling incentive, and it bothers me. That’s the big drawback as I see it. But if the bill is crafted correctly and it is made crystal clear that this only grandfathers in people who have already been here a long time, I think the benefits outweigh the disadvantages.

I am not certain about that, though, and I understand the arguments for a much more Draconian bill. That said, I don’t think either Congress or Trump would support a bill that didn’t allow some leeway for the people known as Dreamers. Trump has been back and forth on the issue, but the bulk of his statements on the subject have made it pretty clear to me that he is at least somewhat in favor of the sort of bill I’m talking about, as long as it’s passed by Congress.

27 Responses to “Trump to Congress on DACA: the ball’s in your park now”

  1. expat Says:

    I saw CNN talk with several dreamers. None mentioned the separation of powers under the constitution. I guess they don’t teach that in school anymore. Nor were any asked about participation in La Raza events. It was all about them. I don’t have a problem with not deporting most of these people, but issues like chain immigration should be addressed in new legislation.

  2. Matt_SE Says:

    There’s only one possible result of tossing this back to the still-GOP-establishment-controlled Congress: some form of amnesty. It will be made all the easier by the still extant legal status of the Dreamers. That’s if they manage to do something.

    It’s also possible that Congress is paralyzed with fear and will do nothing, just like they did on Obamacare.

    We need better representatives, better Senators, and better leadership. Throw out the incumbents in 2018.

  3. Geoffrey Britain Says:


    “And yes, it does send a message that if you somehow get here, even if illegally, and stay here illegally, your child will be allowed official status and be allowed to work.”

    That message will be heard loud and clear and acted upon… forever.

    “if the bill is crafted correctly and it is made crystal clear that this only grandfathers in people who have already been here a long time”

    It all depends upon what your definition of “crystal clear” is… I guarantee it won’t be yours or mine or anyone’s on the right.

    “I don’t think either Congress or Trump would support a bill that didn’t allow some leeway for the people known as Dreamers.”

    I fully agree. Which is why the problem will continue until the demographics end it with the end of the American experiment in representative democracy. An experiment that an increasing percentage of Americans have and are rejecting. A percentage certain to increase with every million ‘dreamers’.

    We are witness to a people busily crafting the chains of their future enslavement.

  4. Geoffrey Britain Says:


    “It was all about them.”

    Doesn’t that say all we really need to know?


    “We need better representatives, better Senators, and better leadership.”

    In the aggregate, are not the ones we currently have, a fairly close reflection of the public’s mindset?

    “Throw out the incumbents in 2018.”

    Isn’t it a given that with big GOP money backing the majority of those incumbents in the primaries, that many of them will win and run in the general election against a liberal/leftist democrat?

    Will not then voting for various third party candidates split the right’s vote and ensure the election of the democrat?

    Isn’t this a fairly good example of a game that’s been rigged so that the ‘house’ can’t lose?

  5. skeptic Says:

    Obama has come out now with a perfunctory written statement. Someone on Hotair had an elaborate theory that Obama would not make a spoken statement because it would be used in primary TV ads against open-borders so-called Republicans who support the amnesty. I looked and all Obama has made is a Facebook post.

  6. Cap'n Rusty Says:

    I’m a dreamer, too. I dream of living in the nation that was created by our Founding Fathers. A nation where the people, not the government, are sovereign. The nation enshrined in our Constitution. And the nation that hundreds of thousands have given their lives to create, maintain and hand down to us. Oh, I may be a dreamer, but I’m not the only one.

  7. Montage Says:

    The reason Obama overstepped his bounds was because Congress kept punting and doing nothing on the issue. Why should a president [any president – regardless of party] wait for Congress to not do something? I’m quite sure that if Trump faced a Democratic senate that would not pass any laws on important issues he would look for solutions just like Obama did. AND his supporters would agree with his actions.

    Now that Trump has handed DACA to Congress maybe something will get done. In fact, I predict they will draft legislation that will be similar to what Obama set up. How ironic if true. And how crazy our political times will be that if they do pass something the supporters of DACA like that it will – in part – be because Trump took this step.

    Although I do think he could have handled it with more grace.

  8. M J R Says:

    I think Ace’s perspective heads in a decent direction.


    “Trump himself has indicated a lot of times that he is himself willing to sign a DACA bill into law, thus amnestying and legalizing child illegals.

    “I have several problems with the latter. For one thing, legalizing the children also legalizes — in practice, if not in law — the adult illegals living in the country who have the children. The idea of deporting the adult parents while keeping the children in country seems so bizarre that not even the government would do it.

    “Another problem I’ve mentioned is this — if you’re going to offer a dovish proposal on child illegals, then at least make it part of a border security bill which funds the wall and defunds sanctuary cities. Don’t just give it away for free — the Democrats never do, after all. They always demand concessions for their priorities.”


  9. neo-neocon Says:


    I guess you don’t care about separation of powers.

    It doesn’t surprise me.

    I do care. It’s more common for people on the right to care, because we care about the Constitution and all that old stuff. Not all on the right care, but it’s a lot more common than it is on the left.

  10. DonKeyhoti Says:

    Neo, respectfully the proper phrase to use in your title should be, “The ball is in your court” …not park. It comes from tennis and not America’s National Pastime. Speaking of tennis, our young American girls are doing great with four in the U.S. Open quarter finals.

  11. The Other Chuck Says:

    You continually and repeatedly make the assertion that …the problem will continue until the demographics end it with the end of the American experiment in representative democracy.

    The more you single out and alienate one group of people after another, whether by ethnic and cultural background or simple skin color, the more your statement becomes self-fulfilling prophecy. The repeal of DACA, while constitutionally justified, only makes it more likely these people will vote Democrat when they become citizens, which they most certainly will down the road.

    If you believe that the 12 million or more Hispanics here illegally, and their legally born children which could easily double or triple that number, are likely to become liberal voting Democrats, then the solution is to find a way to be inclusive, and not to engage in a losing battle of ethnic cleansing. Last year I wrote a comment that I believe still rings true. Here is part of it:

    … assume he [Trump] gets authority to build the wall, and further assume that by some miracle of deal making he gets ICE, Homeland Security, the Border Patrol and possibly even state National Guards to take part in the daunting task of first finding the illegals, then arresting them, then placing them in holding facilities (FEMA camps), and finally deporting them. They are entitled to deportation hearings. Can you imagine what that would be like? They have children, many underage, who are U.S. citizens who cannot be deported. Where will they go? Will they be sent to camps with their parents or placed in foster care? They are also entitled to seek refugee status. More delays. We are talking about 12,000,000 plus people, the combined population of New York City and Los Angeles!

    Now again suppose that this process actually gets started. Do you not believe that there will be massive push back? The Catholic Church will offer sanctuary, as will cities like Chicago, Los Angeles, and San Francisco. There will be demonstrations, marches, rallies, and civil disobedience the likes of which we haven’t seen since the Vietnam War days.

    I didn’t address the Dreamer problem, but the same dynamics apply. Simply put, these people are never, ever going to be deported. While they continue to round and deport criminal aliens and in the process occasionally nab a handful of regular aliens, the sheer number of people, the fact that many of them are integrated into communities through church and work, and the outcry that would result if they ever try mass deportations, insures this won’t happen. Think for a minute: Many, probably most of the Dreamers have younger brothers and sisters who are United States Citizens and cannot be deported. Does it make any sense to single out these people who have been raised and educated in this country, deport them to a country they do not know, and leave behind their illegal parents? And if you deport the parents along with them, what happens to the American born children?

    The last Republican Governor of California, Arnold Schwarzenegger, gave a speech in Delano in 2007 before a packed high school auditorium. Delano is predominately Hispanic and yet he was very well received. It is the center of the table grape growing industry, and most of the people there are employed in agriculture. This is NOT coastal California, is NOT liberal, and guess what? It voted for Trump, as did the rest of Kern County.

    So why do you want to ostracize, marginalize, and deport these people? That isn’t what Governor George Bush did in Texas, Susanna Martinez did in New Mexico, nor what Arnold Schwarzenegger did in California. Demographics be damned!

  12. Montage Says:


    I do believe in separation of powers. The question is what exactly are the powers of each branch? The executive branch [Obama] used its own authority and the powers delegated to it by Congress to form DACA. The executive branch does have leeway in cases regarding immigration. For instance, if a president wanted to deport a bunch of illegals he has the authority to do so.

    Even the Supreme Court recently had a 4 – 4 decision on the matter. Each of the justices – regardless of political views – are experts in the law and have an opinion on Constitutional matters. I am someone who believes that a president’s powers – as well as the Constitutionality of any action – is dependent upon the particular case.

    As Justice Robert Jackson wrote in 1952
    “The actual art of governing under our Constitution does not and cannot conform to judicial definitions of the power of any of its branches based on isolated clauses or even single Articles torn from context…. Presidential powers are not fixed but fluctuate, depending upon their disjunction or conjunction with those of Congress.”

    I’m not exactly sure what you mean by ‘left’ and ‘right’. These are labels. I will say that if the Constitution were set in stone on every issue we would not have or need justices or courts and may not, in fact, have a country.

    Either way I stand by my opinion: When a president is liked by either party his supporters will stand with that president before they stand by what they consider to be ‘Constitutional’. Getting done what the voters want done is more important than Constitutional opinions. Yes, that is a populist view. But look where we are now. Trump is loved like a king. Obama was too. Is that bad? Probably. It depends on who is king….

  13. Geoffrey Britain Says:

    The Other Chuck,

    “The more you single out and alienate one group of people after another, whether by ethnic and cultural background or simple skin color”

    We did not invade their home, they invaded ours. So why is it that it is I who is doing the ‘alienating’ in insisting upon the rule of law?

    As for ethnic and cultural background; it is only when an ethnicity’s behavior indicates a firm resistance to assimilation and a culture is antithetical to liberty where I object to inclusion within the American tapestry.

    When and where have I defined skin color as a determinant for inclusion? In fact I have often said that, it is NOT skin color but culture that matters ‘stupid’.

    “The repeal of DACA, while constitutionally justified, only makes it more likely these people will vote Democrat when they become citizens, which they most certainly will down the road.”

    If we follow your path, they certainly will become citizens and we will lose our country. Appeasement, which is what you are suggesting, never works. I welcome any legal immigrant who desires to BE an American. It is that kind of immigrant who helped build this country and the other type that will help to destroy it. Since the 60s, an increasing percentage of illegal immigrants do NOT want to be Americans.

    “the solution is to find a way to be inclusive”

    A societal ‘inclusiveness’ that has no expectations of the need for its immigrant’s to embrace key cultural and civilizational values is a formula for societal balkanization. Such a society will inevitably and inescapably devolve into smaller, mutually hostile states and groups.

    Evidently you are unaware that I have long dismissed the building of a wall as an effective deterrent. I strongly favor self-deportation. Easily accomplished by going after the employers with mandatory jail sentences, ending State and Federal benefits and imprisoning criminal illegals with the death penalty if they return.

    No jobs+no benefits = self-deportation.

    F**k the “massive push back”. Violent protesters should be arrested, tried and have their citizenship rescinded and then deported.

    Those offering ‘sanctuary’ should meet the same fate.

    We did not do this to the ‘dreamers’. Their parents did it to them. Yet you have not one word of censure for them. American born children should leave with their parents and if they wish, return after reaching their majority.

    “So why do you want to ostracize, marginalize, and deport these people?”

    I want them to follow the law, just as you and I have to because if we are not ALL held to that standard, you introduce a societal cancer that will in time destroy this society. Otherwise, this crop of ‘dreamers’ will NOT be the last, instead you will have set an example that will result in it not ending until this society has become another third world hell hole.

    “That isn’t what Governor George Bush did in Texas, Susanna Martinez did in New Mexico, nor what Arnold Schwarzenegger did in California.”

    Excuse me if I do not hold RINO solutions in high regard. History demonstrates that they were part of the problem.

    “Demographics be damned!”

    “Facts are stubborn things.” It is we that will be damned not reality.

  14. parker Says:

    The problem with rewarding lawlessness is we get more lawlessness. I realize it is not realistic to think we can deport all of the illegal aliens, but I very much dislike that children who entered illegally or were born here after the parents entered illegally should be granted a path to citizenship. And that exactly is what will happen unless Congress strictly forbids a pathway, Even then, the courts will find a way to rule otherwise.

    The Other Chuck,

    Of course the majority will be solid voters for the democrats. Why else do you think the left wants open borders and amnesty? It certainly is not because of the kindness of their scheming hearts.

  15. neo-neocon Says:


    Yes, I had a little brain glitch there apparently. I got my baseball and tennis wires crossed.

  16. Cornhead Says:

    Media narrative is all about emotion. Brought here against their will. The only country they have ever know. Americans but for a paper. Yada, yada. I would slap Paul Begela silly if I could.

    No mention of the drunk illegal that killed Sarah Root about five miles from where I am now.

    Trump will cut a deal. Dreamers can stay if the wall is funded and e-verify is mandated. Genius.

    Days like today make me happy Trump won. Only he would act. Hillary would have given them citizenship by EO.

  17. Cornhead Says:

    Report that over 2,000 DACA people have been convicted or charged with serious crimes. Murder, drugs, human smuggling, etc. All 800,000 are not our “best and brightest” as many Dems assert.

  18. Cap'n Rusty Says:


    I usually agree with you. Not this time. The issue is not compassion. The issue is the preservation of the rule of law.

    Trump was elected, inter alia, to restore the rule of law, which means strict adherence to the Constitution. Obama took the law into his own hands, decreeing DACA because Congress wouldn’t pass what he wanted. That was blatantly unconstitutional. It was an impeachable offense. It was dictatorial.

    President Trump has the Constituional authority to rescind DACA with the stroke of a pen, and should do so. The weeping, wailing and gnashing of teeth by people who have no one to blame other than their parents, are as nothing compared to the tragedy of the loss of the rule of law. After all, didn’t their parents leave a lawless country to come here?

  19. LindaF Says:

    A great part of the problem with the former Executive Action was that they didn’t enforce the provisions, generous though they were:
    – no attempt to verify age at entry, or current age
    – ditto for continuous stay
    – crimes were ignored
    – education – or rather, lack of it – ignored

    IF Congress would pass a bill, Democrats/Deep State would just ignore it again.

    They ALL need to get on that bus.

  20. GRA Says:

    The presentation of Dreamers is the same tactic pulled when advocating for same-sex “marriage.” First, isolate the target group. Second, define it. In this case it’s putting forth teenagers with “big dreams” who are top students. Why would anyone be a dream killer? You conservatives said you wanted hard working, respectful (legal) immigrants so why are you stripping away these “rights”?

  21. AesopFan Says:

    A couple of interesting takes on the DACA question:

    “If the argument goes that “Dreamers” should not be punished for the actions of their parents, then why should modern Americans be punished for the actions of their grandparents, or even their European ancestors?

    It is this conundrum, this duplicity, and this anti-intellectualism that sets real America so drastically apart from the liberal left.

    While New York’s “elite” would have you believe it they are smarter than the average American, it is the latter that instinctively understand “fairness” as a concept, and are able to strike the balance between morality, constitutionality, and common sense.

    For Obama and his army of shrieking bleeding hearts — including many Republican legislators — the first of these notions is misplaced, and the last two are seemingly non-existent.

    Not only should DACA be rescinded, it should become a test case for the facts that firstly: you may not seek to penalize descendants for non-crimes; secondly, you may not directly benefit from criminal acts (as Dreamers do) and expect special treatment.”

    “It is shockingly easy to appear gracious and “correct” and virtuous when you’re a rich elitist living behind gates, working behind mammoth studio walls, and never coming into contact with the real world results of your limousine leftism.

    As a Christian who makes a living in a field that is under no threat from an amnesty recipient, I cannot think of anything less Christian than to burden others — primarily America’s already disenfranchised working class, most especially in urban areas — with my do-gooderism. That is not Christianity. That is a selfish form of vanity, which is a sin.”

  22. AesopFan Says:

    Well, this is a fine mess.

  23. blert Says:

    The typical DACA child is 25 years old.

    Obviously old enough to be a parent.

  24. The Other Chuck Says:

    I’ve never been fond of police entrapment because the government is complicit in the crime. For the same reason I’m even more against punishing millions of people who were enticed to break the law by decades of government neglect enforcing it. It’s like we laid out a welcome mat. Free education. Free medical care. Jobs for the taking. Driver’s licenses. And only token enforcement. The government winked. But now we’re going to get tough. Yeah. Right. Don’t make me laugh.

    This is all show. Neither the Dreamers nor their parents will be deported. What did Trump just Tweet? If congress doesn’t pass “legal” amnesty he will revisit it in 6 months. What, a new, better, GREAT DACA?

    (Aesop, I have some 25 y/o Drambuie that will soothe that headache.)

  25. neo-neocon Says:

    The Other Chuck:

    By the way, ending DACA is not the same as deporting DREAMERS. The two are often conflated, but they are not the same.

    DACA gave the DREAMERS official status and benefits. They no longer had to live under the threat of possible deportation. But it was rare that they were deported.

    Ending DACA wouldn’t mean they would be deported, unless a special deportation policy was issued. It would actually probably mean going back to the way it was, pre-DACA.

    At least, that’s my understanding of the situation.

  26. The Other Chuck Says:

    Neo, I’m sure you’re right that ending DACA as it now stands wouldn’t mean automatic deportation. However, because close to 800,000 people filled out applications and in the process gave a lot of information to the government, it sure would be easy to find them, wouldn’t it?

    We’ve needed real border enforcement for many years, and not just because of the illegal immigration. Drug smuggling, gangs, and terrorist infiltration are equally important. Those reasons should have been emphasized more. Trying to make scapegoats of field hands, dishwashers, and gardeners is petty.

  27. AesopFan Says:

    The Other Chuck Says:
    September 7th, 2017 at 12:04 am

    (Aesop, I have some 25 y/o Drambuie that will soothe that headache.)
    * * *
    Appreciation for the generous offer, and I (figuratively) take you up on it; however, (literally) chocolate will have to suffice.
    Given the political climate of today, if I weren’t a Mormon, I would be an alcoholic.

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Previously a lifelong Democrat, born in New York and living in New England, surrounded by liberals on all sides, I've found myself slowly but surely leaving the fold and becoming that dread thing: a neocon.

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