At a White House dinner on September 13, President Trump came to an agreement with House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer regarding the future of DACA. The leaders agreed, in principle, to a deal that would lay the foundation to legalize the immigration status of “Dreamers”– people eligible for DACA protections. The deal expressly excluded any funding for a border wall.
On October 8, President Trump sent a letter to Congress that outlined his priorities for immigration reform, which would also give legal status, but not a path to citizenship, to Dreamers. Among the priorities listed in the letter sent to congressional leaders include: enough money to build a wall along the Mexican border; changes to deportation laws that would make it easier to send undocumented immigrants, including unaccompanied children, back to their home countries; crackdowns on sanctuary cities; an end to family chain migration (which would make it impossible for people to sponsor extended family members); and creating a “merit”-based immigration system to dramatically reduce the legal entry of unskilled workers.
Pelosi and Schumer issued a statement opposing President Trump’s priorities: “The list includes the wall, which was explicitly ruled out of the negotiations,” the statement reads. “If the president was serious about protecting the Dreamers, his staff has not made a good faith effort to do so.” Many experts believe that Stephen Miller, a leading aide to Trump regarding immigration, is the author of the letter Trump sent to Congress. Miller is a former staffer of then Alabama Senator Jeff Sessions. Mr. Miller is well-known as an immigration hard-liner who favors tough immigration enforcement and opposes any efforts to give legal status to people who entered the country without permission. This includes the Dreamers.
The status of pending legislation regarding DACA is constantly in flux. If you have any questions regarding how these developments may impact your immigration case, please schedule an appointment to speak to your attorney at the Joseph & Hall P.C. If you are not a current client, please call us to schedule a consultation.
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