DACA Deal Advocates Are Unlikely To Back Trump’s Immigration Policy Wish List

The president’s wish list features mandatory E-Verify, rollback of protections for unaccompanied immigrant children and renewed calls for a border wall.

By Jill AmentOctober 9, 2017 11:19 am,

President Donald Trump has laid out his latest wish list of immigration measures, as part of negotiations with lawmakers to protect DACA recipients, also known as DREAMers. Last month, Trump and Democratic leaders of the House and Senate discussed a potential deal to preserve DACA in exchange for measures restricting immigration and enhancing border security. But the new list from the president seems likely to spark objections from those with whom Trump has been negotiating.

Many items in the new list are familiar; a wall along the length of the U.S.-Mexico border, 10,000 new immigration agents, toughened federal restrictions on asylum-seekers and denial of federal grants to so-called ‘sanctuary cities.”

Geoffrey Hoffman, director of the Immigration Clinic at the University of Houston says Trump’s new list isn’t surprising, and represents the administration’s ongoing attempts to crack down on illegal immigration. And it’s unlikely that Democrats will go along, even if it means keeping DACA in place.

“I think that this is a very, very tall list for Democrats to stomach,” Hoffman says. “… mandatory E-Verify.”

Hoffman says E-Verify, which uses online databases to determine whether a person is entitled to work in the U.S., has been criticized for an error rate that has caused from 150,000 to 500,000 people to be erroneously flagged for working unlawfully. E-Verify also imposes a time window of less than two weeks for workers to resolve negative findings by the system, Hoffman says.

In addition to proposals the Trump administration has floated in the past, the new wish list would do away with existing protections for unaccompanied immigrant children, Hoffman says.

Hoffmans says those who are focused on saving DACA will find the administration’s proposals hard to swallow, even if passing them would mean DACA could remain in effect

“The recipients of DACA who are now being used as bargaining chips – I think they’re going to find this very very troubling in the sense that nobody likes to be used in this way,” Hoffman says.


Written by Shelly Brisbin.