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The Deferred Action for Children Arrivals

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Being brought into a new country as a child can be hard to understand. Immigrants time and time again have come into the United States in hopes of offering their children a better life. Through all those efforts, there are still more challenges to come when the children of those immigrants are now being threatened because they have come here illegally. These children that have grown up in the U. S, and have only ever really known the U. S, are now in fear of being sent back to the country they were born in but have never known. The Deferred Action for Children Arrivals (DACA) is a program presented by the Obama administration back in 2012.

The program has assisted many undocumented young adults by allowing them to have access to higher education, better jobs, and protection from deportation. Things changed for DACA when Trump decided to end the program on September 5th of this year. After ending the program, Trump said that he is leaving it up to congress to pass a law, by March 5th of 2018, allowing those that are protected under DACA to stay. While there is much disagreement between the Republicans and the Democrats about the issue, there is also tension within the Republican Party.

Majority of the Republican Party would rather end the program entirely, while a few believe that there should be some sort of path to citizenship. The Republicans currently have the upper hand on the issue as the Democrats continue to fight for some kind of compromise. There is a lot at stake for the Dreamers, and although it is now up to congress to come up with proper legislative, the fate of the Dreamers and the program remain unknown. It is clear that the Democrats want a reformed immigration act that would be equipped with a smoother path to citizenship.

The Republicans on the other hand would rather end the program and send those that are undocumented back to where they came from. Negotiations have been attempted but nothing has been agreed on. The Washington Post presented an article by Ed O’Keefe titled, “Deal or No Deal on DACA? Republicans Say No. Democrats Say Not Yet. ” In the article O’Keefe describes negotiations between Trump and the House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, and Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer. O’Keefe states, “Trump and the Democratic leaders agreed to work on legislation… protect dreamers… bolster U. S.-Mexico border security, but not include the construction of more border wall. ”

The Democrats have advocated for the young immigrants that do not have a voice, and they are attempting to meet Republicans in the middle. They are willing to agree to strengthen boarder security but continue to disagree with the “necessity” of a wall. While Democrats would need the approval of Republicans when it comes to the DACA program, the Republicans need votes from the Democrats when it comes to passing the new spending bill. With the spending bill needing to pass, there is room for even more negotiation between parties.

As The New York Times explains in their article titled, “Trump Feuds With Democrats Ahead of a Possible Government Shutdown” by Thomas Kaplan, the Democrats have something to work with. Kaplan mentions, “Democrats hold significant leverage because Republicans do not have enough votes to pass a spending measure next week without some Democratic support. ” Without the support of the Democrats on the new spending bill, the government could lead to a shutdown. USA Today explains what a government shutdown is in an article by Erin Kelly titled, “What Would a Government Shutdown Mean For You?

” The article goes on to explain that when federal funding runs out, Congress is responsible for a new spending bill. In this case, if there are not enough votes to pass the bill, the government will shut down and most services would stop. The only services that would continue are those that are thought to be essential. If a shut down occurred, it would make Republicans look bad. As former Republican staff director for senate Budget committee mentions in Kaplan’s article, “‘…a government shutdown under their watch just looks like they can absolutely do nothing.

’” Both parties need to come together and need to come to a bipartisan agreement that would benefit both parties and the well being of those involved. As usual, Republicans and Democrats don’t always see eye to eye on issues that are presented to them. In past lectures we have learned that those that are affiliated with a specific party do not always agree with what their party believes. Through the debate of the DACA program, some Republicans have agreed that there should be a better immigration act while others have actually threatened to sue Trump if he didn’t end the program.

In an article presented by Slate. com titled, “The GOP Wants DACA Dead” by Mark Joseph Stern states, “…a coalition of Republicans sent Attorney General Jeff Sessions an ultimatum: Kill DACA by Sept. 5 or we’ll take you to court. ” As the article explains, the coalition of Republicans argued that originally Obama did not have the right to grant these young people the rights that they were given, like protection from deportation. They claim that he did not have the power to do so and that the program is unconstitutional so now it falls on Trump to make a decision.

Stern indicates that the decision to end the program was not Trumps decision, but the decision of the Republican Party. With the threat of the lawsuit, the Republican Party has to think about how they’re choices are perceived. For example, as Stern explains, if they decide to take this to court they would have to spend on resources to defend the program. This could also be particularly hard for Trump, as he has continuously advocated for tougher immigration laws and the huge wall he is going to build. For many of his supporters, supporting a program like DACA is not ideal.

This is why Trump decided to end the program when he did, and almost for the same reasons did he decide to give congress a chance to pass legislation that would allow Dreamers to stay. Once Trump ended the program there was a lot of backlash. Protests in front of the White House commenced and many displayed their disagreement with the ending of DACA. Instead of dealing with DACA head on he called on Congress to find a solution by March 5th in the upcoming year. Much negotiation continues especially with the new spending bill approaching.

Within the Republican Party the pot continues to be stirred as the Speaker, Paul Ryan, has made a few comments that have the rest of the party troubled. In the article titled, “Paul Ryan Tells Conservatives DACA Will Be Part of Spending Bill” presented in The Huffington Post, it is explained that although some things that could benefit the Democrats would not be part of the spending deal, DACA would be included. The articles states, “…Ryan told leaders of the Republican Study Committee that he didn’t believe CSR payments would be part of the deal with Democrats, but that DACA would.

” Although the Democrats would not be graced with Cost Sharing Reduction (CSR) payments that would lower the amount they have to pay, it could still be a huge win if DACA is included. Members of the Republican Study Committee (RSC) were asked to comment on the idea that DACA would be included. Many still pushed back on the idea and as the article explains, many of the RSC members really believe that before any long term DACA fix there should be more done to secure the boarder first.

When Huffington Post asked Ted Yoho Republican representative of Florida what he thought about Ryan including DACA in the spending bill his response was, “…he better not… You gotta get rid of DACA. DACA needs to go away…” While Republican Representative Raul Labrador of Idaho said that, “…it would be a ‘big problem’ if Ryan included those immigration provisions… ‘That’s true leadership, I guess…’” Labrador sarcastically stated while he strongly displayed his disagreement.

Ryan has suggested that they need the help of the Democrats when it comes to the new spending bill, so regardless there needs to be a compromise whether the Republicans agree or disagree. The article suggests that by having the Speaker comment on DACA possibly being included is a good sign for the Democrats and again, this could definitely be a big win for the party. The fate of DACA is left up to Congress to figure out. According to the National Public Radio, in an article by Jessica Taylor titled “Here are Four Options Congress Could Take on DACA,” there are currently bills pending in congress.

For starters there is The Dream Act of 2017 that consists of some of the protections that DACA currently offers, and also creates a path for citizenship or permanent legal resident status based on certain requirements. Secondly, there is the Recognizing Americas Children Act, which was introduced in March. This act would also pave a way to legal status that would eventually lead to citizenship, as it would codify much of what DACA already provides. Third option is the American Hope Act that provides the fastest path to citizenship.

To be eligible for this act those that have come into the country illegally must have entered before the age of 18, and work, school, or military is not required. The act will reject those that have been convicted of any crimes. Lastly is the Bridge Act, which is the only act that could buy congress time. This act would codify the current DACA program into law that would extend the program for three years, but is the only act that would not provide a path to citizenship. Clearly there are many different options that congress could take when it comes to DACA.

Ultimately if they don’t seem to come to an agreement, the Bridge Act sounds like their best bet. Congress can buy itself a little more time while also sparing the 800,000 people that are currently protected by DACA. In comparison with the other acts, Congress still has plenty of options to find the best solution. Once the bill is approved by congress it still needs to be passed by the House and the Senate. It will be interesting to see what congress decides by March 5th of 2018. Regardless of how many are on board to pass a bill that will properly cover the Dreamers, there are still many that are opposed to a progressive solution.

That being said, if an act gets passed it could still take a while before it actually becomes a law due to those that oppose. The position that the Republicans and the Democrats have taken when it comes to the DACA program is clear on both ends. America on the other hand has displayed a couple of different opinions when it comes to the poll. In an article presented by the American Enterprise Institute (AEI) titled, “Public Opinion and DACA: What Do the Polls Say? ” it is clear that the American people have a variety of different opinions.

The articles describes that before Trumps announcement to end DACA 48% if Americans said they wanted him to keep DACA while 29% wanted him to end the program. After the announcement 55% of Americans believed that Trump made the wrong decision. The article then goes on to state, “Broader questions about DACA that don’t mention Trump also showed more support than opposition to the program. ” Trump or no Trump people are still able to have compassion for those that are covered by DACA and who initially had no choice when being brought into the country.

53% of Americans supported the idea that children that were brought into the country at a young age should be allowed to stay. Throughout the polls there is much support for the program from the public, and that is simply positive. When it comes to the Republicans as we have mentioned some are for the program while many are in opposition. This article in particular points out that throughout recent surveys Democrats had been supportive while Republican responses varied. The Republicans, in other words, are somewhat divided when it comes to the program.

The results of the polls were interesting to see but ultimately resulted in viewing that the American People do have sympathy for the Dreamers. It must be difficult for Dreamers to have been brought into a country on the basis of a promise. The promise being that this new country would better provide much opportunity for a better life. That promise is slightly tainted when those Dreamers are now old enough to know that they don’t have a voice when it comes to their fate, that they must live in fear, and that there is a possibility they will get sent back to the country where they were born.

The DACA program has done a lot for the Dreamers when it comes to education, work, and protection from deportations. With DACA Dreamers have contributed to society, and have been able to flourish and progress. There is much more positivity than negativity coming from a program like DACA. Both parties were kind of in a tug-of-war on whether the program should end all together. The Republicans have been clear about wanting to end the program while the Democrats attempt to negotiate in order to maintain the program.

Republicans will need the Democrats votes when it comes to the new spending bill approaching December 8, and trading those votes for their support on the DACA program seems like a possibility. Congress will be responsible for legalizing DACA, and we will see where that leads by their deadline of March 5th. Until then there is no telling what will happen with the DACA program, but there needs to be a compromise for Dreamers because this is their reality.

Works Cited

Bowman, Karlyn, and Eleanor O’Neil. “Public Opinion and DACA: What Do the Polls Say?” American Enterprise Institute, 12 Sept. 2017, www.aei.org/publication/public-opinion- and-daca-what-do-the-polls-say/.

Fuller, Matt, and Elise Foley. “Paul Ryan Tells Conservatives DACA Will Be Part Of Spending Deal.” The Huffington Post, TheHuffingtonPost.com, 25 Oct. 2017, www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/paul-ryan-daca-omnibus- conservatives_us_59efd21ce4b0b7e63265bb76.

Kaplan, Thomas. “Trump Feuds With Democrats Ahead of a Possible Government Shutdown.” The New York Times, The New York Times, 28 Nov. 2017, www.nytimes.com/2017/11/28/us/politics/trump-democrats-government-shutdown- pelosi.html

Kelly, Erin. “What Would a Government Shutdown Mean for You?” USA Today, Gannett Satellite Information Network, 24 Apr. 2017, www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2017/04/24/what-happens-in-a-government- shutdown/100838716/.

O’Keefe, Ed. “Deal or No Deal on DACA? Republicans Say No. Democrats Say Not Yet.” The Washington Post, WP Company, 3 Oct. 2017, www.washingtonpost.com/politics/deal-or- no-deal-on-daca-republicans-say-no-democrats-say-not-yet/2017/10/03/ed9c7abc-a857- 11e7-92d1-58c702d2d975_story.html?utm_term=.ed06e7144fca.

Shear, Michael D., and Julie Hirschfeld Davis. “Trump Moves to End DACA and Calls on Congress to Act.” The New York Times, The New York Times, 5 Sept. 2017, www.nytimes.com/2017/09/05/us/politics/trump-daca-dreamers-immigration.html.

Stern, Mark Joseph. “How Republicans Are Extorting Trump Into Killing DACA.” Slate Magazine, 28 Aug. 2017, www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/jurisprudence/2017/08/how_republicans_are_ extorting_trump_into_killing_daca.html

Taylor, Jessica. “Here Are 4 Options Congress Could Take On DACA.” NPR, NPR, 6 Sept. 2017, www.npr.org/2017/09/06/548766330/here-s-how-congress-could-act-to-save-daca.

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