Americans have every right to be skeptical. They don’t think the federal government will keep its commitments. The last time Congress passed a comprehensive bill — in 1986 — it was supposed to stop illegal immigration. And yet the number of undocumented immigrants more than doubled to 11 million. So the people are rightly asking themselves, “Why will this time be different?”
Especially with this president. Instead of working to build trust, he has destroyed it. Last November, after his party lost control of the Senate, the president decided to circumvent the legislative process by unilaterally granting legal status to 5 million people. He has already demonstrated he is not serious about enforcing the law. Passing comprehensive reform during his presidency would merely render it meaningless.
This is not an argument for inaction — far from it. In fact, only concrete action can rebuild credibility. If Congress secured the border and strengthened enforcement, that would show Americans that the federal government is more trustworthy.