Are Dreamers being used as a bargaining chip for funding a border wall?

The president of the United States, Donald Trump sought funding for a border wall on Sunday to be part of any immigration deal. The deal would also include protection for the many youngsters that were brought into the country illegally and are popularly known as ‘Dreamers.’

The White House has released a list of principles in documents where Trump administration is forcing a crackdown on minors who entered the United States from Central America and were unaccompanied.

Leaders of the Congress received the plan on Sunday night and the Democrats were quick to rebuke it because they are seeking a legislative plan for the Deferred Action On Childhood Arrivals {DACA} program which was ended by Pres. Trump during the last month.

Democratic Leaders In the Forefront With Their Rebuke To the President

Nancy Pelosi, the House of Representatives Democratic leader and Chuck Schumer, the Senate Democratic leader were both in the forefront in their rebuke to the President when they mentioned the administration couldn’t be serious about compromising or helping the Dreamers if they decide to begin with a list which is considered as harmful to the Dreamers and to the community of immigrants.

Funding for the border wall was explicitly ruled out during negotiations earlier.

The list provided has also mentioned the wall which was earlier ruled out of the negotiations explicitly. The President and his staff have also been accused of not making an effort in good faith, despite making claims about their seriousness of protecting the Dreamers.

The present administration under Pres. Trump wants the list provided to be the guiding force for immigration reform in Congress and also to accompany legislation to replace DACA. The legislation was introduced by the Obama administration for the protection of nearly 800,000 Dreamers from being deported while also allowing them to secure work permits.

If the legislation is enacted, the priorities of the White House could possibly lead to the deportation of the parents of the Dreamers.

The Financial Implications Of Funding A Border Wall

The financial implications of providing the funding needed for a border wall is going to be a figure which will exceed billions. The proposals which have been suggested by the administration are emphasizing on immigration enforcement and is also including requests for funds to hire the staff necessary to enforce immigration laws. The administration has requested funding to employ 370 immigration judges, 1000 attorneys for immigration and customs enforcement agency, 300 federal prosecutors and 10,000 additional agents of ICE, all of which will bring additional costs on the administration.

The legislative affairs director of the President, Marc Short has provided information to reporters via a conference call that the priorities were essential for mitigating the legal and economic consequences of any grants provided to DACA recipients. The White House has, however, clarified that the Dreamers would not receive any benefits for achieving US citizenship and would only be legalized in any deal which may be concluded.

Pres. Trump had earlier informed the Congress about a period of six months by which legislation to help the Dreamers should be introduced. Dreamers are just a fraction of the 11 million undocumented immigrants living in the United States, most of whom belong to the Hispanic community.

The documents provided by the administration are calling for tighter standards for US asylum-seekers and denial of federal grants which are provided to ‘sanctuary cities’ that are serving as refuges for illegal immigrants. Employers of illegal immigrants are also required to employ an electronic verification system which has been identified as E-Verify in order to prevent illegal immigrants from securing jobs.

Is Pres. Trump Driving A Hard Bargain By Seeking Funding for A Border Wall?

Is Pres. Trump trying to fulfill campaign promises by driving a hard bargain?

During his campaign for the presidency in 2016, Trump had pledged to build a wall on the border with Mexico while also mentioning that the costs of the wall would be paid by the Mexicans. Mexico has confirmed they will not pay for the wall despite repeatedly being reminded by Pres. Trump. Perhaps it was the refusal of the Mexicans which has prompted the President to begin prodding the Congress and seek to fund for a border wall.

A suggestion made by the President after a meeting with Schumer and Pelosi had alarmed some of his supporters because of the statement that funding for the wall may not have to be part of a DACA solution. The White House has prioritized the wall but has also indicated it could be established as part of the overall bill or with the use of legislative avenues of other types. The officials of the administration have also indicated that any legislation which did not include the priorities mentioned on the list would not necessarily be vetoed by the President.

Republicans from the Congress have also introduced several bills which include certain aspects of the ideas promoted by Pres. Trump. However, Democrats and immigration groups are viewing the proposals as a hard bargain which is being driven by the President who seeks funding for a border wall.

Is President Trump a tough nut to crack? What’s your take on his proposals?



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