President Trump’s gamble was risky. And at first his plan struck many conservatives as too generous because it would offer 1.8 million young immigrants who came to the United States illegally as children the opportunity to become citizens. But by coupling his offer with demands to sharply reduce legal immigration — a trade-off many Democrats say they cannot accept — then threatening to veto anything that does not meet those demands, the president has made a bipartisan compromise exceedingly difficult.
That may have been the point, as it sits just fine with many on the right who never wanted a deal in the first place.
“Trump outsmarted them,” said Laura Ingraham, the Fox News host and author who was one of the many voices on the right who helped bury the 2013 immigration legislation that died when the House refused to take it up. “They won’t cut a deal is my prediction.”