Possible deal with DACA program brings relief to local recipients

Samuel Corum  Anadolu Agency  Getty

Samuel Corum Anadolu Agency Getty

"The Bible has a definite protection for children who were under age 20 when their parents chose immigration to the Promised Land for them (Numbers 14)". The Raise Act, which the White House supports, would end chain migration and implement a merit-based system, effectively halving immigration over the next 10 years.

Amid the uncertainty, colleges and universities are stepping up efforts to protect students enrolled in the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, or DACA, telling them to be hopeful but plan for the worst. And for more on what the people most affected by the future of DACA are thinking, we turn to NPR's Richard Gonzales.

RICHARD GONZALES, BYLINE: Good morning. Immigration lawyers and experts in the United States are trying to figure out the extent of damage that the termination of DACA will have on young people and Indian American families who benefitted from it. Obama justified DACA on the authority of "prosecutorial discretion", but, as Fox News' Gregg Jarrett recently expressed, it is more accurate that Obama was "distorting" prosecutorial discretion.

Garaufis said when it came to it, the only people really harmed if the government insisted on the deadline were the "800,000 people who are sweating that someone will knock on their door and send them to a country they don't even know with a language they don't speak".

The contradictions continue. On Thursday, The Hill newspaper reported that Mr. Trump said the Dreamers deal doesn't include a plan for citizenship, only moments after an administration spokesman had stated that Mr. Trump is looking at "a responsible path forward ... that could include legal citizenship over a period of time".

SIMON: Based on what you've heard, do you like the sound of this deal? One DREAMer I spoke to called it a psychological torture.

Here in Los Angeles, I saw the fear and anxiety in which many of my relatives lived because they, unlike my parents, were undocumented.

McElaney-Johnson said the mood on campus is mixed among DACA students who feel stressed for themselves and their families but who also have "a certain resolve to do everything they can to stand up for their rights". It's hard to imagine Republicans managing to pass a bill their most fervent voters hate when they couldn't pass one their voters wanted more than anything.

Currently, the two Houses of Congress pose different structural challenges.

Ximena Cortez, a 22-year-old software test engineer, clutches two manila folders as she sits across from a lawyer. Her name is Mitzie Perez of San Bernardino, Calif. "I want to go on record; I believe we get a wall built".

After months and years in limbo, Arias said the intrigue on Wednesday and Thursday seemed like just more of the same. "If they can't, I will revisit this issue!" he tweeted on the day of the DACA announcement. "Who's fighting for them?" said Barletta, who is hoping to capitalize on the anti-illegal immigration sentiment that allowed Trump to win the state.

SIMON: I'll be this blunt - do you trust President Trump on this? The president is getting pushback from conservatives, who say he has flip-flopped on immigration. Congress now has an urgent and closing window to right this wrong and prevent this catastrophe for so many young people and their families and for their communities and our country. He said he was "not talking about amnesty at all".

GONZALES: No, they don't.

"We always want border stuff, so that's not a problem", Pelosi told reporters at the Capitol. Make the Road New York is also a plaintiff in the case. As Townhall.com editor Guy Benson aptly points out, "The Trump administration clearly stated yesterday that they will not be "targeting" these young people or reshuffling their enforcement priorities". And he says, he can't call himself optimistic or pessimistic.

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