President Donald Trump appears likely to pull the plug on DACA, the Obama-era program allowing young people who came to the U.S. illegally as children to remain here, several government officials said Friday.
Administration officials said Friday that the Homeland Security secretary, Elaine Duke, and Attorney General Jeff Sessions discussed the program with senior officials Thursday during a meeting at the White House. Sessions has been a consistent opponent of the program…
Trump is said to be weighing whether to let DACA gradually expire or end it immediately, but the officials said it is not yet clear which option Trump may choose.
So this seems to be a slight but significant change in the language being leaked from unnamed government officials. Yesterday Trump was considering ending it and today the decision is between cutting it off all at once or phasing it out. Either way, the new assumption seems to be that it’s going away.
Yesterday Allahpundit pointed out some reasons why it might be better politically for Trump to wait on a lawsuit against DACA which 10 states have threatened to file rather than making this decision on his own.
There’s a parallel here to the decision over Obamacare cost-sharing payments. Trump could have announced he was cutting off the payments to insurers at any time, thereby creating a huge problem for insurers and, probably, driving many more of them off the exchange. Instead, the president has continued to make the payments. The administration announced last week that the payments would be made through August.
But while he hasn’t actually cut the payments, Trump has threatened to cut them off several times, apparently as a negotiating tactic. Is that what he’s doing here as well? For all we know there are White House staffers contacting Democrats in Congress behind the scenes saying something like ‘Can we talk about money for the wall now?’
DACA was an attempt by the previous White House to use its regulatory authority to do an end run around Congress. But for all his tough talk about the wall, Trump was often surprisingly soft on this one issue. Back in February Trump said it was “a very, very difficult subject, for me.” He added, “We are going to deal with DACA with heart.”