The president showed his customary lack of sensitivity when his administration “teased” the end of the Deferred Action For Childhood Arrivals program (DACA for short) shortly before going on another long weekend. Trump spokesperson Sarah Huckabee Sanders was quick to tell journalists that the president “loves” these DREAM-ers, which sounded far more ominous than such an admission ever should. Now it’s clear that it’s the kind of love he felt for Ivana Trump and Marla Maples—fleeting, and full of legal action.
As CNN reports, Attorney General Jeff Sessions has announced that DACA is being “rescinded,” putting the status of 800,000 or so unauthorized immigrants—many of whom have been in the U.S. since they were six years old—in jeopardy. The renegade Keebler elf called the program “unconstitutional,” claiming it had denied jobs to the real ’Muricans out there.
Trump’s effectively punted to Congress, which now has six months to act. Last Halloween’s jack-o-lantern didn’t make the announcement himself, but he did indicate that some news on that front would be coming on his social media platform of choice this morning.
According to CNN, the Department of Homeland Security has issued a statement about its planned “orderly wind down” of DACA. The agency won’t process any new applications from unauthorized immigrants who meet DACA’s stringent criteria now that the executive order is being rescinded. But Homeland Security will renew “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 U.S.” After that, there are approximately 300,000 who could lose their work authorization starting in 2018, with another 320,000 becoming vulnerable beginning January 2019.
Although the blitheness of Trump’s tweets suggests that, as with so many other things, he’s flying by the seat of his ill-fitting pants on this reversal, he was acting in part out of pressure from state officials like Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, who had threatened to sue the government if DACA wasn’t ended. Ahead of the official announcement, those dang Hollywood liberals who historically failed to recognize the brilliance of The Apprentice called on Trump to keep DACA. Now the ACLU’s condemned the decision, while Senate Democrats like Tim Kaine and Chuck Schumer have called it “heartless.”