President Donald Trump appeared to rescind his support for a deal with Democrats on the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program to legalize undocumented immigrants brought to the United States as children.
“NO MORE DACA DEAL,” the president tweeted on Easter Sunday from Mar-a-Lago, his members-only Florida club, adding that the program instituted by President Barack Obama is encouraging more people to cross the border illegally.
“A lot of people are coming in because they want to take advantage of DACA. The Democrats blew it,” he later told a reporter as he was heading to church.
The reference to “caravans” in Trump’s tweet appeared to sync up with a segment that aired earlier Sunday morning on “Fox and Friends” ― one of the president’s favorite Fox News programs ― that was titled “Caravan of Illegal Immigrants Headed To U.S.”
To be eligible for DACA, one must have continuously resided in the U.S. since June 15, 2007.
Trump’s reversal on DACA comes after weeks of him seeking to pin the blame on Democrats for the unresolved fate of so-called Dreamers who find themselves in limbo because the president ended the program in September. At the time, he urged Congress to come to an agreement before early March to prevent the potential deportation of hundreds of thousands of Dreamers, indicating he didn’t want to have the government take that action.
“It’s March 5th and the Democrats are nowhere to be found on DACA. Gave them 6 months, they just don’t care,” he tweeted last month. “Where are they? We are ready to make a deal!”
Congressional negotiations over DACA have stalled. The Trump administration last month pitched a deal to extend it for two-and-a-half years in exchange for $25 billion to construct the president’s border wall, but Democrats refused. The White House similarly refused a Democratic counteroffer to fund construction of the wall in exchange for a pathway to citizenship for 1.8 million Dreamers.