U.S. Department of Justice

Attorney General Sessions Delivers Remarks on DACA

Washington, DC ~ Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Remarks as prepared for delivery
Good morning. I am here today to announce that the program known as DACA that was effectuated under the Obama Administration is being rescinded.

The DACA program was implemented in 2012 and essentially provided a legal status for recipients for a renewable two-year term, work authorization and other benefits, including participation in the social security program, to 800,000 mostly-adult illegal aliens.

This policy was implemented unilaterally to great controversy and legal concern after Congress rejected legislative proposals to extend similar benefits on numerous occasions to this same group of illegal aliens.

In other words, the executive branch, through DACA, deliberately sought to achieve what the legislative branch specifically refused to authorize on multiple occasions. Such an open-ended circumvention of immigration laws was an unconstitutional exercise of authority by the Executive Branch.

The effect of this unilateral executive amnesty, among other things, contributed to a surge of unaccompanied minors on the southern border that yielded terrible humanitarian consequences. It also denied jobs to hundreds of thousands of Americans by allowing those same jobs to go to illegal aliens.

We inherited from our Founders—and have advanced—an unsurpassed legal heritage, which is the foundation of our freedom, safety, and prosperity.

As the Attorney General, it is my duty to ensure that the laws of the United States are enforced and that the Constitutional order is upheld.

No greater good can be done for the overall health and well-being of our Republic, than preserving and strengthening the impartial rule of law. Societies where the rule of law is treasured are societies that tend to flourish and succeed.

Societies where the rule of law is subject to political whims and personal biases tend to become societies afflicted by corruption, poverty, and human suffering.

To have a lawful system of immigration that serves the national interest, we cannot admit everyone who would like to come here. That is an open border policy and the American people have rightly rejected it.

Therefore, the nation must set and enforce a limit on how many immigrants we admit each year and that means all can not be accepted.

This does not mean they are bad people or that our nation disrespects or demeans them in any way. It means we are properly enforcing our laws as Congress has passed them.

It is with these principles and duties in mind, and in light of imminent litigation, that we reviewed the Obama Administration’s DACA policy.

Our collective wisdom is that the policy is vulnerable to the same legal and constitutional challenges that the courts recognized with respect to the DAPA program, which was enjoined on a nationwide basis in a decision affirmed by the Fifth Circuit.

The Fifth Circuit specifically concluded that DACA had not been implemented in a fashion that allowed sufficient discretion, and that DAPA was “foreclosed by Congress’s careful plan.”

In other words, it was inconsistent with the Constitution’s separation of powers. That decision was affirmed by the Supreme Court by an equally divided vote.

If we were to keep the Obama Administration’s executive amnesty policy, the likeliest outcome is that it would be enjoined just as was DAPA. The Department of Justice has advised the President and the Department of Homeland Security that DHS should begin an orderly, lawful wind down, including the cancellation of the memo that authorized this program.

Acting Secretary Duke has chosen, appropriately, to initiate a wind down process. This will enable DHS to conduct an orderly change and fulfill the desire of this administration to create a time period for Congress to act—should it so choose. We firmly believe this is the responsible path.

Simply put, if we are to further our goal of strengthening the constitutional order and the rule of law in America, the Department of Justice cannot defend this type of overreach.

George Washington University Law School Professor Jonathan Turley in testimony before the House Judiciary Committee was clear about the enormous constitutional infirmities raised by these policies.

He said: “In ordering this blanket exception, President Obama was nullifying part of a law that he simply disagreed with.….If a president can claim sweeping discretion to suspend key federal laws, the entire legislative process becomes little more than a pretense…The circumvention of the legislative process not only undermines the authority of this branch but destabilizes the tripartite system as a whole.”

Ending the previous Administration’s disrespect for the legislative process is an important first step. All immigration policies should serve the interests of the people of the United States—lawful immigrant and native born alike.

Congress should carefully and thoughtfully pursue the types of reforms that are right for the American people. Our nation is comprised of good and decent people who want their government’s leaders to fulfill their promises and advance an immigration policy that serves the national interest.

We are a people of compassion and we are a people of law. But there is nothing compassionate about the failure to enforce immigration laws.

Enforcing the law saves lives, protects communities and taxpayers, and prevents human suffering. Failure to enforce the laws in the past has put our nation at risk of crime, violence and even terrorism.

The compassionate thing is to end the lawlessness, enforce our laws, and, if Congress chooses to make changes to those laws, to do so through the process set forth by our Founders in a way that advances the interest of the nation.

That is what the President has promised to do and has delivered to the American people.

Under President Trump’s leadership, this administration has made great progress in the last few months toward establishing a lawful and constitutional immigration system. This makes us safer and more secure.

It will further economically the lives of millions who are struggling. And it will enable our country to more effectively teach new immigrants about our system of government and assimilate them to the cultural understandings that support it.

The substantial progress in reducing illegal immigration at our border seen in recent months is almost entirely the product of the leadership of President Trump and his inspired federal immigration officers. But the problem is not solved. And without more action, we could see illegality rise again rather than be eliminated.

As a candidate, and now in office, President Trump has offered specific ideas and legislative solutions that will protect American workers, increase wages and salaries, defend our national security, ensure the public safety, and increase the general well-being of the American people.

He has worked closely with many members of Congress, including in the introduction of the RAISE Act, which would produce enormous benefits for our country. This is how our democratic process works.

There are many powerful interest groups in this country and every one of them has a constitutional right to advocate their views and represent whomever they choose.

But the Department of Justice does not represent any narrow interest or any subset of the American people. We represent all of the American people and protect the integrity of our Constitution. That is our charge.

We at Department of Justice are proud and honored to work to advance this vision for America and to do our best each day to ensure the safety and security of the American people.

Thank you.

The White House

Statement from President Donald J. Trump

As President, my highest duty is to defend the American people and the Constitution of the United States of America.  At the same time, I do not favor punishing children, most of whom are now adults, for the actions of their parents.  But we must also recognize that we are nation of opportunity because we are a nation of laws.
The legislative branch, not the executive branch, writes these laws – this is the bedrock of our Constitutional system, which I took a solemn oath to preserve, protect, and defend.
In June of 2012, President Obama bypassed Congress to give work permits, social security numbers, and federal benefits to approximately 800,000 illegal immigrants currently between the ages of 15 and 36.  The typical recipients of this executive amnesty, known as DACA, are in their twenties.  Legislation offering these same benefits had been introduced in Congress on numerous occasions and rejected each time.
In referencing the idea of creating new immigration rules unilaterally, President Obama admitted that “I can’t just do these things by myself” – and yet that is exactly what he did, making an end-run around Congress and violating the core tenets that sustain our Republic.
Officials from 10 States are suing over the program, requiring my Administration to make a decision regarding its legality. The Attorney General of the United States, the Attorneys General of many states, and virtually all other top legal experts have advised that the program is unlawful and unconstitutional and cannot be successfully defended in court.
There can be no path to principled immigration reform if the executive branch is able to rewrite or nullify federal laws at will.
The temporary implementation of DACA by the Obama Administration, after Congress repeatedly rejected this amnesty-first approach, also helped spur a humanitarian crisis – the massive surge of unaccompanied minors from Central America including, in some cases, young people who would become members of violent gangs throughout our country, such as MS-13.
Only by the reliable enforcement of immigration law can we produce safe communities, a robust middle class, and economic fairness for all Americans.
Therefore, in the best interests of our country, and in keeping with the obligations of my office, the Department of Homeland Security will begin an orderly transition and wind-down of DACA, one that provides minimum disruption.  While new applications for work permits will not be accepted, all existing work permits will be honored until their date of expiration up to two full years from today.  Furthermore, applications already in the pipeline will be processed, as will renewal applications for those facing near-term expiration.  This is a gradual process, not a sudden phase out.  Permits will not begin to expire for another six months, and will remain active for up to 24 months.  Thus, in effect, I am not going to just cut DACA off, but rather provide a window of opportunity for Congress to finally act.
Our enforcement priorities remain unchanged. We are focused on criminals, security threats, recent border-crossers, visa overstays, and repeat violators.  I have advised the Department of Homeland Security that DACA recipients are not enforcement priorities unless they are criminals, are involved in criminal activity, or are members of a gang.
The decades-long failure of Washington, D.C. to enforce federal immigration law has had both predictable and tragic consequences: lower wages and higher unemployment for American workers, substantial burdens on local schools and hospitals, the illicit entry of dangerous drugs and criminal cartels, and many billions of dollars a year in costs paid for by U.S. taxpayers.  Yet few in Washington expressed any compassion for the millions of Americans victimized by this unfair system.  Before we ask what is fair to illegal immigrants, we must also ask what is fair to American families, students, taxpayers, and jobseekers.
Congress now has the opportunity to advance responsible immigration reform that puts American jobs and American security first.  We are facing the symptom of a larger problem, illegal immigration, along with the many other chronic immigration problems Washington has left unsolved.  We must reform our green card system, which now favors low-skilled immigration and puts immense strain on U.S. taxpayers.  We must base future immigration on merit – we want those coming into the country to be able to support themselves financially, to contribute to our economy, and to love our country and the values it stands for.  Under a merit-based system, citizens will enjoy higher employment, rising wages, and a stronger middle class.  Senators Tom Cotton and David Perdue have introduced the RAISE Act, which would establish this merit-based system and produce lasting gains for the American People.
I look forward to working with Republicans and Democrats in Congress to finally address all of these issues in a manner that puts the hardworking citizens of our country first.
As I’ve said before, we will resolve the DACA issue with heart and compassion – but through the lawful Democratic process – while at the same time ensuring that any immigration reform we adopt provides enduring benefits for the American citizens we were elected to serve.  We must also have heart and compassion for unemployed, struggling, and forgotten Americans.
Above all else, we must remember that young Americans have dreams too. Being in government means setting priorities. Our first and highest priority in advancing immigration reform must be to improve jobs, wages and security for American workers and their families.
It is now time for Congress to act!

WH 9/5 print pool report #3-- POTUS quotes on DACA

Tierney Sneed, Talking Points Memo

At the end of pool spray for tax reform meeting POTUS was asked by pool about DACA decision and had this to say:


"I have a great heart for these folks we're talking about. A great love for them and people think in terms of children but they'le really young adults. I have a love for these people and hopefully now congress will be able to help them and do it properly. and i can tell you, speaking to members of congress, they want to be able to do something and do it right. and really we have no choice, we have to be able to do something, and i think it's going to work out very well. and longterm it's going to be the right solution."

Federation for American Immigration Reform

FAIR Applauds Winding Down DACA

“FAIR applauds the decision by President Trump to the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program,” said FAIR President Dan Stein
(September 5, 2017, Washington, D.C.) — The following statement was issued by Dan Stein, president of FAIR, regarding the decision by the Trump administration to wind down the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program:
“The Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR) applauds the decision by President Trump to wind down the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.
“In our view, DACA was an unconstitutional abuse of executive authority by President Obama. Before implementing the program in 2012, President Obama stated on 22 previous occasions that he did not have the power to grant de facto amnesty and work authorization to entire classes of illegal aliens. His subsequent efforts to grant similar blanket deferments were found to be unconstitutional by the courts.
“As President Obama stated when he implemented DACA, there were no guarantees that the program would continue after he left office. President Trump repeatedly stated during the campaign that he would end DACA. The winding down period  announced today will not only give DACA recipients time to get their affairs in order, but also gives Congress a unique opportunity to reengage in the immigration debate.  President Trump has made clear his vision is for real immigration reform, which includes:

  • Move to merit-based immigration while reducing overall numbers;
  • Construction of the border wall;
  • Increased interior enforcement;
  • Defunding of dangerous and illegal sanctuary cities;
  • Enact mandatory, national E-Verify to end the jobs magnet.
“Congress should seize this opportunity to come together and forge these much-needed reforms in our nation’s immigration policy.  If the Democrats fail to show up at the negotiating table, it raises the legitimate question of whether DACA is something that the Democrats really want, or if it has merely been used as a convenient political football for fundraising and energizing their base.
“President Trump has indicated that he is willing to forge a long-term solution for real immigration reform, but it takes two sides to make a deal. The American public is watching.”
Founded in 1979, FAIR is the country’s largest immigration reform group.  With more than 1.3 million members and supporters nationwide, FAIR fights for immigration policies that serve national interests, not special interests.  FAIR believes that immigration reform must enhance national security, improve the economy, protect jobs, preserve our environment, and establish a rule of law that is recognized and enforced.


Statement from President Barack Obama

Immigration can be a controversial topic.  We all want safe, secure borders and a dynamic economy, and people of goodwill can have legitimate disagreements about how to fix our immigration system so that everybody plays by the rules.
But that’s not what the action that the White House took today is about.  This is about young people who grew up in America – kids who study in our schools, young adults who are starting careers, patriots who pledge allegiance to our flag.  These Dreamers are Americans in their hearts, in their minds, in every single way but one: on paper.  They were brought to this country by their parents, sometimes even as infants.  They may not know a country besides ours.  They may not even know a language besides English.  They often have no idea they’re undocumented until they apply for a job, or college, or a driver’s license.
Over the years, politicians of both parties have worked together to write legislation that would have told these young people – our young people – that if your parents brought you here as a child, if you’ve been here a certain number of years, and if you’re willing to go to college or serve in our military, then you’ll get a chance to stay and earn your citizenship.  And for years while I was President, I asked Congress to send me such a bill. 
That bill never came.  And because it made no sense to expel talented, driven, patriotic young people from the only country they know solely because of the actions of their parents, my administration acted to lift the shadow of deportation from these young people, so that they could continue to contribute to our communities and our country.  We did so based on the well-established legal principle of prosecutorial discretion, deployed by Democratic and Republican presidents alike, because our immigration enforcement agencies have limited resources, and it makes sense to focus those resources on those who come illegally to this country to do us harm.  Deportations of criminals went up.  Some 800,000 young people stepped forward, met rigorous requirements, and went through background checks.  And America grew stronger as a result.
But today, that shadow has been cast over some of our best and brightest young people once again.  To target these young people is wrong – because they have done nothing wrong.  It is self-defeating – because they want to start new businesses, staff our labs, serve in our military, and otherwise contribute to the country we love.  And it is cruel.  What if our kid’s science teacher, or our friendly neighbor turns out to be a Dreamer?  Where are we supposed to send her?  To a country she doesn’t know or remember, with a language she may not even speak? 
Let’s be clear: the action taken today isn’t required legally.  It’s a political decision, and a moral question.  Whatever concerns or complaints Americans may have about immigration in general, we shouldn’t threaten the future of this group of young people who are here through no fault of their own, who pose no threat, who are not taking away anything from the rest of us.  They are that pitcher on our kid’s softball team, that first responder who helps out his community after a disaster, that cadet in ROTC who wants nothing more than to wear the uniform of the country that gave him a chance.  Kicking them out won’t lower the unemployment rate, or lighten anyone’s taxes, or raise anybody’s wages.
It is precisely because this action is contrary to our spirit, and to common sense, that business leaders, faith leaders, economists, and Americans of all political stripes called on the administration not to do what it did today.  And now that the White House has shifted its responsibility for these young people to Congress, it’s up to Members of Congress to protect these young people and our future.  I’m heartened by those who’ve suggested that they should.  And I join my voice with the majority of Americans who hope they step up and do it with a sense of moral urgency that matches the urgency these young people feel.
Ultimately, this is about basic decency.  This is about whether we are a people who kick hopeful young strivers out of America, or whether we treat them the way we’d want our own kids to be treated.  It’s about who we are as a people – and who we want to be. 
What makes us American is not a question of what we look like, or where our names come from, or the way we pray.  What makes us American is our fidelity to a set of ideals – that all of us are created equal; that all of us deserve the chance to make of our lives what we will; that all of us share an obligation to stand up, speak out, and secure our most cherished values for the next generation.  That’s how America has traveled this far.  That’s how, if we keep at it, we will ultimately reach that more perfect union.

Democratic National Committee

DNC Chair Tom Perez on Trump Rescinding DACA

DNC Chair Tom Perez released the following statement in response to President Trump’s decision to rescind the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, which President Obama signed in 2012 to protect nearly 800,000 immigrants who were brought to this country as children:
“Donald Trump has secured his legacy as a champion for cruelty. First, he took away protections for immigrant parents. Now he’s going after their children. Rescinding DACA is the latest tactic in the Republican playbook to promote hate and discrimination. Because of the Republican Party, DREAMers will lose their ability to go to work and contribute to their communities. Deportations will tear families apart and drive immigrants back into the shadows. And our economy will face a devastating blow, costing our country billions in GDP over a decade.
“DREAMers share our values and strengthen our nation. Their courage is American to its core, and they deserve far better from the president of the only country they’ve ever called home.
“Democrats believe that diversity and compassion are our nation’s greatest strengths. We believe in fixing our immigration system, not uprooting lives and shattering families. And as Donald Trump and his Republican colleagues try to trample on the American Dream, we will continue to fight for the immigrant families who contribute to our country every day.”


Rescinding DACA Puts American Heroes, Economy At Risk

Trump’s cruel decision to rescind DACA will remove protections given to nearly 800,000 immigrants who were brought to this country as children. These DREAMers contribute to our nation’s economy and many of them are American heroes who risk their lives in service to our country.
MSNBC: Video: “American Dreamers: DACA recipients among first Harvey responders”
Huffington Post: “This DREAMer died saving Harvey flood victims. His body was found the day reports surfaced Trump will kill DACA.”
“Alonso Guillen came to the U.S. from Mexico as a child. He died here, too: On Wednesday, he disappeared when his boat capsized while he was rescuing survivors of the flooding caused by Hurricane Harvey in the Houston area.”
BuzzFeed: “This paramedic who rescued Harvey victims may be deported if Trump ends DACA”
“Houston-area paramedic Jesus Contreras worked six days straight after Hurricane Harvey hammered through southeast Texas, rescuing people from floodwaters and taking some of them to local hospitals. […] In between rescuing people and helping people who needed dialysis, insulin, or reach life-saving medical machines, Contreras didn’t have a lot of time to think about himself. That changed when he came home on Thursday to shower and saw the news that President Trump may end Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA).”
McClatchy: “These are the military recruits who might be deported under Trump”
“Some young immigrants protected by the Obama-era ‘Dreamer’ program who were brought to the U.S. illegally as children and enlisted in the military are worried they’ll be deported, after indications from the Trump administration that they could be left without legal protection to stay in the country they signed up to fight for.”
Former Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta: “What about the ‘dreamers’ who serve us?”
“In 2014, the Defense Department began to allow a small subset of DACA recipients with specialized skills to enter the military, following in the tradition of thousands of noncitizens who have stood up and said they are willing to fight and die for our country. Today, there are several hundred DACA recipients in the Army; if DACA is ended, these soldiers could face immediate deportation.”
CNBC: “Here's how much DACA deportations would cost your state's economy”
“At issue is the fate of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA, program, which has shielded nearly 800,000 young immigrants from deportation and allowed them to work in the country. The loss of those workers, and the paychecks they earn, would wipe out hundreds of billions of dollars from U.S. gross domestic product, according to groups that support the program.”
CNN: “Trump's DACA decision could cost thousands of jobs, study says”
“Thousands of people are likely to lose their jobs if President Trump phases out an Obama-era policy that protects undocumented immigrants brought to the U.S. as children from being deported.”
New York Times: “‘Dreamers’ Find Allies in Trump’s Business World”
“On DACA, the executives are taking a pragmatic approach. While many immigration advocates have focused on humanitarian issues, the executives focused on the economic toll. According the letter from the executives, 65 percent of Dreamers have bought a car and 16 percent have purchased their own home. This economic activity, they argue, would be eliminated if the Dreamers were deported.”

Trump, Republicans Own DACA Decision

Jeff Sessions tried to find every legal excuse in the book to rescind DACA, but let’s be clear --  Donald Trump and his Republican party have long pushed hateful policies and ended the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program today in one of their latest tactics to promote discrimination. Time and again, Republicans and Trump have doubled-down on radical policies that would force hundreds of thousands back into the shadows and rip them away from their families and communities.
While Democrats continue to push the DREAM Act and comprehensive immigration reform, Republicans are working to kick nearly 800,000 people out of our country. DREAMers are our friends, neighbors, students, teachers, entrepreneurs, workers and activists. Trump and Congress must immediately work to fix our broken immigration system and not shatter the lives of families across the country.
See below for what Donald Trump and Republicans have said about immigrants and DACA:
Trump: “When Mexico Sends Its People, They’re Not Sending Their Best…They’re Sending People That Have Lots Of Problems, And They’re Bringing Those Problems With Us. They’re Bringing Drugs. They’re Bringing Crime. They’re Rapists.” TRUMP: “When Mexico sends its people, they’re not sending their best. They’re not sending you. They’re not sending you. They’re sending people that have lots of problems, and they’re bringing those problems with us. They’re bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists. And some, I assume, are good people. It’s coming from more than Mexico. It’s coming from all over South and Latin America, and it’s coming probably -- probably from the Middle East. But we don’t know.” [Presidential Announcement Speech, New York NY, 6/16/15]
Trump On Deporting Families: “We Have To Keep The Families Together… They Have To Go.” TODD: “You'll rescind that one, too? You'll rescind the Dream Act executive order, the DACA?” TRUMP: “We have to make a whole new set of standards. And when people come in, they have to come in--” TODD: “You're going to split up families. You're going to deport children?” TRUMP: “Chuck -- no, no. No, we're going to keep the families together. We have to keep the families together.” TODD: “But you're going to kick them out?” TRUMP: “They have to go.” [Meet The Press, NBC, 8/16/15]
Trump On Undocumented Immigrants: “We Are Going To Have A Tremendous Drive To Throw Out All Of The Terrible People, The Gang Members, And The Drug People, And People That Are Heading Up Drug Cartels. We Are Going To Get Them Out. The First Day I Am In Office, I’m Going To Authorize Get Them Out, And That Could Be Millions Of People. We’re Getting Them Out 100%.” TRUMP: “I don’t think so. I think it’s going to be very strong. We are building a wall. We’re going to make Mexico pay for the wall. They make a fortune off our country, and believe me, they can pay for it, and they will pay for it. It will be a very powerful wall, a very strong wall. We want people to come into our country, but they have to come in legally, through our legal process. We are going to have a tremendous drive to throw out all of the terrible people, the gang members, and the drug people, and people that are heading up drug cartels. We are going to get them out. The first day I am in office, I’m going to authorize get them out, and that could be millions of people. We’re getting them out 100%. We are going to have tremendous security at the border, and then we are going to see what happens. We are going to go through a process, and we’re going to see what happens. We are going to get millions of people that should not be here, all of the crime. We have such tremendous crime. Those people are going out day one.” [WMTW (ABC 8 Portland ME), 8/25/16]
Trump: “We Are Going To Deport Many People, Many, Many People.” COOPER: “Right, but he was mocked for saying that, look, you can't deport 11 million people and it now seems like, I know you're not really focusing –“ TRUMP: “First, I want to see what's going to happen. We are going to deport many people, many, many people.” [Anderson Cooper 360, CNN, 8/25/16]
Trump: “First Thing, First Hour I'm Going To Authorize Get Rid Of All Of The Drug Lords And The Gang Members And All Of The People That Are Here Illegally That Shouldn't Be And Committing Tremendous Crime” With “Very Little Due Process.” TRUMP: “I never talked about dragging people out of their homes, Bill. I never talked about that. Look, I mean, just so you understand. We are going to have a very strong border. People are going to come into our country but they're going to come in legally. But we're going to have the wall. We're going to have -- by the way Mexico is going to pay for the wall 100 percent. We're going to have a wall. Mexico is going to pay for the wall. We're going to have a strong border. Border patrol 16500 agents endorsed me because they understand we are going to get rid of first thing, first hour I'm going to authorize get rid of all of the drug lords and the gang members and all of the people that are here illegally that shouldn't be and committing tremendous crime, like unbelievable crime.” O’REILLY: “You can't just do executive order.” TRUMP: “Very little due process.” O’REILLY: “No, but there's some.” TRUMP: “Bill, I think there's very little, okay, but I think there's very little. And the police, the local police know who all of them are. And we're going to get rid of them.” [O’Reilly Factor, Fox News, 9/6/16]
Trump On His Mass Deportation Plan: “You're Going To Have A Deportation Force.” TRUMP: “You're going to have a deportation force, and you're going to do it humanely and you're going to bring the country -- and, frankly, the people, because you have some excellent, wonderful people, some fantastic people that have been here for a long period of time.” [Morning Joe, MSNBC, 11/11/15]
2016: GOP Platform Declared That DACA And DAPA “Must Be Immediately Rescinded By A Republican President.” “The executive amnesties of 2012 and 2014 are a direct violation of federal law and usurp the powers of Congress as outlined in Article I of the Constitution. These unlawful amnesties must be immediately rescinded by a Republican president. In a time of terrorism, drug cartels, human trafficking, and criminal gangs, the presence of millions of unidentified individuals in this country poses grave risks to the safety and sovereignty of the United States. Our highest priority, therefore, must be to secure our borders and all ports of entry and to enforce our immigration laws.” [Republican Party Platform, 2016]
Rubio On DACA: “The 2012 Order Has To Come To End At Some Point. That Executive Order Will Expire At The End Of This Presidency … That Cannot Be The Permanent Policy Of The United States. I Think It Was Wrong To Make That Decision In The First Place.”  “While the Florida Republican said he does not believe Congress should simply undo the existing temporary deportation deferments granted under DACA, he made clear the program must be terminated. ‘The 2012 order has to come to end at some point. That executive order will expire at the end of this presidency … that cannot be the permanent policy of the United States. I think it was wrong to make that decision in the first place,’ Rubio said during a breakfast sponsored by the Christian Science Monitor.” [Christian Science Monitor Breakfast, 1/21/15; Buzzfeed, 1/21/15]
Rand Paul Supported Legislation Ending DACA, Which Would Have Effectively Restarted The Deportation Of Young People Who’d Lived In The U.S. For Years. “Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) said in an interview published Thursday that he supports legislation ending the president’s program to defer deportation for undocumented immigrants who came to the U.S. as children…More than 550,000 undocumented immigrants (so-called Dreamers) have taken advantage of DACA. The program is popular in immigrant communities, and its repeal would effectively restart deportations of young people who have lived in the United States for years.” [Huffington Post, 8/21/14]

Ted Cruz Introduced Legislation That Would Defund And Repeal President Obama’s Executive Order On Deferred Action For Childhood Arrivals (DACA). “U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, today introduced legislation to prevent the Obama Administration from using any taxpayer funds to expand DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) and from continuing to lawlessly grant amnesty and work permits to new immigrants who enter the country illegally. He also outlined guiding principles that Congress should keep in mind when considering reforms.” [Press Release, Office of Senator Cruz, 7/17/14]
McConnell Said That Obama Taking Unilateral Action On Immigration Was “Like Waving A Red Flag In Front Of A Bull.” ANGLE: “But Republican leaders issued a warning about unilateral action.” MCCONNELL: “It's like waving a red flag in front of a bull to say if you guys don't do what I want, I'm going to do it on my own.” ANGLE: “McConnell says that would poison the well for any serious effort to pass immigration reform in Congress -- Bret.” [Special Report with Bret Baier, Fox News, 11/5/14]
Cornyn Said There Needed To Be “A Targeted Way To Address And Defund” The Implementation Of Obama’s “Unconstitutional Executive Action” On Immigration. “Senate GOP leaders also have signaled a reluctance to hold hostage an integral part of the nation's security apparatus in a fight over Obama's unilateral immigration policies, however unconstitutional Obama critics say they may be. ‘A targeted way to try to address and defund that implementation of his unconstitutional executive action is something I think we need to do,’ said Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, the Senate Majority Whip, appearing Sunday on CBS's Face the Nation. ‘But we're not going to take any chances with the homeland.’” [Houston Chronicle, 1/15/15]
Blunt Said It Wasn’t Fair To Say That He Supported Obama’s Executive Actions On Immigration. MR. RUSSERT: “So, Senator, is it fair to say then that you support the president's order, but you don't support the use of executive power to obtain it?” SEN. BLUNT: “No, it's not fair to say that. I don't -- I don't support the use of the executive power to obtain it, and I think what Marco Rubio has said -- and I'm not sure what the rest of that quote would have been -- but every other time I've heard him make that quote, he's said, and this kind of thing makes it harder to really go back and solve the problem. Anytime you complicate the regular system by throwing something in that's outside the Constitution, outside the way laws are made, you don't make it easier to solve this problem in the future. You make it harder to solve this problem in the future.” MR. RUSSERT: “So very quickly then, you don't support the order then? You do not support the order?” SEN. BLUNT: “No, I don't support the order. I don't support the order.” [The Daily Rundown, MSNBC, 6/19/12]
John Thune On President Obama’s Executive Action On Immigration: “It Was Unconstitutional ... And Illegal.” “‘The activist community obviously is very adamantly opposed to what the president's executive action did. It was unconstitutional ... and illegal, and so you know, they want to see, I think, Congress battle the White House over that,’ South Dakota GOP Sen. John Thune said. ‘The fact that a lot of people are here for that, perhaps shapes a little bit the discussion.’” [Roll Call, 2/26/15]
Thune Seemed Open To Gutting The Obama Administration’s 2012 DACA Program In Exchange For Border Funds. “After the briefing, South Dakota Sen. John Thune, the No. 3 in GOP leadership, seemed open to the Cruz idea to gut the administration’s 2012 program in exchange for border funds. ‘People are discussing the wisdom of that being part of the solution,’ Thune said. ‘Reversing that decision is going to be pretty fundamental to changing the … message that we’re sending to some of those countries.’” [Politico, 7/18/14]
Jeb Bush, Asked Whether He Would Undo President Obama’s Executive Actions On Immigration, Responded “The DACA and DAPA? Yes I would.” “Bush also said he would undo President Obama's executive action on immigration. ‘The DACA and DAPA? Yes I would,’ he said. ‘It’s possible that by the time the next president arrives the courts will have overturned those because this concept of prosecutorial discretion, which is what he’s used as the basis for these executive orders, is to look at cases on a case-by-case basis and he’s had millions of people basically by the stroke of a pen be given temporary status. I think the better answer is to fix the immigration problem, to solve it the regular order way, which is to go to Congress, have a proposal, work on a bipartisan fashion to fix a broken immigration system.’” [Tampa Bay Times, 4/21/15]
Christie Pledged To Reverse Obama’s Executive Orders On Immigration “Right Away” And Called Them Illegal. “Christie called for an ‘intelligent conversation’ on the problem of illegal immigration, criticizing President Obama for failing to find common ground on the issue. ‘You don’t build consensus through executive order,’ he said, referring to Obama’s executive order on DACA and DAPA. If elected president, Christie vowed to reverse Obama’s executive orders ‘right away,’ calling his actions ‘illegal.’”  [Breitbart, 5/19/16]
Rick Perry Said President Obama “Arbitrarily” Granted Amnesty To Millions Of Illegal Immigrants In Response To His Executive Order, Deferred Action For Childhood Arrivals. “Gov. Rick Perry released a statement regarding the Obama Administration's immigration announcement: ‘The Obama Administration's election-year tactic to bypass Congress and arbitrarily grant amnesty to potentially millions of illegal immigrants is another example of its blatant disregard for our Constitution, our rule of law and our democratic process.” [Press Release, Office of Governor Perry, 6/15/12]
Jindal: “I Think That We Have Got To Stop All The Unconstitutional Executive Orders, The End-Runs Around The Law That This President Has Done.” JINDAL: “Look, I think that we have got to stop all the unconstitutional executive orders, the end-runs around the law that this president has done. He may not like the law, but his job is not to change the law. Congress, we have a lot of folks running for office saying ‘give me a Republican majority and I will reign in this president.’ I am disappointed they did not do that.   I am glad the courts at least for now have suspended some of his illegal executive orders, but obviously that is still on appeal. At the end of the day it is not complicated. They keep talking about comprehensive bills, comprehensive this or that. They need to secure our borders. That is what they keep telling us they are going to do, that is what the American people want, if the president wants to do something constructive, that is what he needs to do.” [Realclearpolitics, 6/22/15]
2015: 218 House Republicans Voted For An Amendment That Defunded Implementation Of DACA.  [House Vote #208, 113th Congress, 1/14/15]
2013: 221 House Republicans Voted For An Amendment That Banned Implementation Of DACA.  [House Vote #208, 113th Congress, 6/6/13]
2015: Reps. Paul Ryan, Kevin McCarthy, Steve Scalise And Cathy McMorris Rodgers Voted For An Amendment That Banned Implementation Of DACA.  [House Vote #208, 113th Congress, 1/14/15]
2013: Reps. Paul Ryan, Kevin McCarthy, Steve Scalise And Cathy McMorris Rodgers Voted For An Amendment That Banned Implementation Of DACA.  [House Vote #208, 113th Congress, 6/6/13]
Paul Ryan Called President Obama Executive Actions On Immigration A “Threat To Self-Government Itself.” “President Obama’s executive amnesty represents a ‘threat’ to America’s very system of government, according to House Speaker Paul Ryan. ‘The Constitution is clear: Presidents don’t write laws, Congress does,’ Ryan said Monday ahead of oral arguments before the Supreme Court in United States v. Texas. ‘Presidents may disagree with the laws, but they are not free to ignore those laws and have unelected bureaucrats write new ones.’ ‘This is a threat to self-government itself,’ Ryan added.” [Breitbart, 4/18/16]
Paul Ryan Said The House Would Vote To Allow The Chamber To File An Amicus Brief Regarding The SCOTUS Case That Challenged Obama’s Executive Immigration Actions. “House Speaker Paul Ryan announced the House will vote soon on legislation authorizing the chamber to file an amicus brief in the case pending before the Supreme Court challenging President Barack Obama's executive actions on immigration. ‘This is a very extraordinary step. In fact it's never been done before but this executive amnesty is a direct attack on the Congress' Article 1 powers under our Constitution,’ Ryan told reporters on Capitol Hill on Tuesday.” [Politico, 3/1/16]
2010: Ryan Voted Against The Dream Act, Which Would Have Protected Certain Undocumented Immigrants Brought To The U.S. As Children From Deportation. “In 2010, Ryan voted against the Dream Act, which would have halted deportations for qualified illegal immigrants brought to the country as children.” [The Hill, 10/27/15]
Kevin McCarthy On President Obama’s Executive Action On Immigration: “America Is A Country Of Laws, And Our Constitution Does Not Grant The President The Authority To Legalize Millions Of Immigrants With The Stroke Of A Pen.” “House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (CA-23) released the following statement on the President’s executive action on illegal immigration: … ‘America is a country of laws, and our Constitution does not grant the President the authority to legalize millions of immigrants with the stroke of a pen. Not only is this action wrong, it does absolutely nothing to solve the underlying problems of our open border and broken immigration system. In fact, it may exacerbate the problem. The President’s action is a prime example of Washington cynicism.’” [Press Release, Office of the Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, 11/20/14]
McCarthy Supported An Effort That Allowed The House To File An Amicus Brief Regarding The SCOTUS Case That Challenged Obama’s Executive Immigration Actions.  “Shortly after President Obama announced his immigration action, dozens of states filed a lawsuit against the administration. The case, United States v. Texas, has made its way to the Supreme Court, which recognized the gravity of the situation and determined to study whether the president violated the constraints of his Article II powers. To push back against the president and restore a proper separation of powers, the House is taking an unprecedented step. We will authorize the speaker of the House to file an amicus brief on behalf of the House of Representatives, sending the Court a clear message that this is more than an ordinary political fight. With our vote, the House will make it clear that we think what the president has done directly infringes on Congress's Article I powers and undermines our representative republic.” [Press Release, Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, 3/17/16]
Scalise Said DACA Was A Magnet For Undocumented Immigrants And Caused The 2014 Influx Of Central American Minors Crossing The U.S. Border. “House Majority Whip Steve Scalise (R-LA) blamed DACA for the influx of unaccompanied minors from Central America. ‘This has been the magnet that’s led to the flood of people coming across our border,” he said. “We have got to stop having this kind of message go out.’” [Talking Points Memo, 8/1/14]
Steve Scalise Would Not Rule Out Impeachment In Response To President Obama’s Executive Actions On Immigration. “Incoming House Majority Whip Steve Scalise (R-La.) refused on Sunday to take impeaching President Barack Obama off the table if Obama takes executive action to limit deportations. On ‘Fox News Sunday,’ host Chris Wallace asked Scalise, who was recently elected majority whip, if the House would consider impeachment. Scalise repeatedly dodged the question.” [Huffington Post, 7/27/14]
McMorris Rodgers: “My Vote Holds The President Accountable By Defunding His Unlawful Executive Order — An Action That Blatantly Disregards The Will Of Congress And The American People — And Represented A Step Backwards On Real, Long-Term Immigration Solutions.” “McMorris Rodgers, a member of the House Republican leadership, proclaimed her support for immigration reform but said she was voting against an overreaching President Obama. ‘My vote holds the president accountable by defunding his unlawful executive order — an action that blatantly disregards the will of Congress and the American people — and represented a step backwards on real, long-term immigration solutions,” she said in a statement.  “I remain committed to strengthening and modernizing legal immigration . . .’” [Seattle PI, 1/14/15]

Libertarian National Committee
Contact: Elizabeth Brierly

Libertarian Party denounces the end of DACA


The Trump administration has announced that it will end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program commonly known as DACA. DACA protects immigrants who came to the US as children. Since it's implementation, DACA has saved almost a million young immigrants from deportation and has allowed them to work legally in the US.


Libertarian Party national chair, Nicholas Sarwark, says, "This is a heartless move by the Trump Administration. The recipients of DACA did nothing wrong. In fact, their parents loved them so much as to risk everything to bring them out of areas of extreme violence and poverty. They wanted a safer, better life for their children in America. How can we disparage them for that? This president shows mercy to a criminally convicted sheriff, but would toss young immigrants to the wolves for the acts of their parents? You can measure a bully based on whom they choose to pick on."


The Libertarian Party does not support classifying undocumented immigrants, of any age, as criminals. The current US immigration system is an embarrassment. People who would like to follow the legal procedures are unable to because these procedures are so complex, expensive, and lengthy.


If Americans want immigrants to enter through legal channels, we need to make those channels fair, reasonable, and accessible.


Libertarians believe that if someone is peaceful, they should be welcome to immigrate to the United States.



South Carolina Democratic Party
Philip Chambers

Trump Costs SC over $245M Annually by Rescinding DACA

Columbia, SC — In response to the Trump’s administration decision to rescind the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), created by President Obama in 2012 to protect immigrants who came to this country as children, South Carolina Democratic Party Chairman, Trav Robertson, released the following statement:
“Donald Trump's actions today are unchristian and immoral. Democrats proudly stand by the 6,406 DACA beneficiaries in South Carolina. We believe that America's biggest strength is our diversity. We will continue to work to fix our broken immigration system and the most important step in doing that is supporting the DREAMers who are contributing to our economy and were brought to this country by no fault of their own. 
“By rescinding the DACA program, Trump will cost the state of South Carolina over $245 million annually. That is a loss that will be felt by the entire South Carolina community. We urge South Carolina Republicans to act and support legislation in Congress to protect our DREAMers.” 

ACLU Statement on Termination of DACA

WASHINGTON — The White House announced today that it is rescinding the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. Lorella Praeli, director of immigration policy and campaigns at the American Civil Liberties Union, said:

“Today is a cruel day for Dreamers, our families, and all Americans. President Trump’s decision to end DACA is a manufactured crisis in response to an artificial deadline from anti-immigrant leaders.

“There is no humane way to end DACA before having a permanent legislative fix in place. President Trump just threw the lives and futures of 800,000 Dreamers and their families, including my own, into fearful disarray, and injected chaos and uncertainty into thousands of workplaces and communities across America. He is using the lives of 800,000 people as pawns.

“But nothing has changed about Dreamers’ proven capabilities and the need to provide these young people with a chance to fully contribute to America. We have 800,000 examples of how DACA strengthened America, including my sister Maria, a graduate of Quinnipiac University, an immigration activist, and a DACA-recipient.

“President Trump’s announcement today underscores the urgency to pass clean, standalone, and bipartisan legislation addressing Dreamers’ renewed vulnerability to deportation. There is enough support to pass a clean and bipartisan Dream Act in the House and Senate. Members of Congress must choose a side: either you stand with Dreamers and our country’s foundation or you are siding with the ugly forces that ended the DACA program and are complicit in any deportation of Dreamers from the country they call home.

“As my family’s lives and futures are thrown into turmoil, I remind myself of our community’s resilience. Years of courage, sacrifices, and organizing won the DACA program in 2012. Now, nothing will deter these Americans and their allies from continuing to fight on behalf of their families and futures. We’ll hold President Trump accountable and others who have made today a dark day in our nation’s history.”

Breaking Promise to Act ‘With Heart,’ Trump Administration Ends DACA, Eliminates Protection for 800,000 Dreamers

Washington, DC – Today President Donald Trump rescinded the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, an Obama-era immigration policy that grants deportation relief for undocumented people who were brought to the U.S. as children, known as Dreamers. Established in 2012, DACA currently protects 800,000 immigrants and grants them the right to remain in the U.S. and receive work permits.

As part of Trump’s plan to phase out DACA, the Administration will not consider new applications for legal status dated after September 5. DACA recipients, whose permit will expire before March 5, must apply for a two-year renewal by October 5. Some Dreamers will be eligible for legal status for another two-plus years, while others may lose their legal status as early as March 6.

In response, LULAC National President Roger C. Rocha, Jr. issued the following statement:

“Trump broke his promise to act ‘with heart’ towards the ‘incredible kids’ protected from deportation under DACA. Dreamers are law-abiding young people who bravely emerged out of the shadows, registered with the government, and pursued higher education. Many of them have served in our military, defending our country and our freedom. They fought for us and we must fight for them. These bright young minds make our communities better and our economy stronger, contributing to the growth of our country’s GDP and benefiting all Americans. Deporting DACA recipients could cost the federal government over $60 billion and reduce our economic growth by $280 billion over the next decade. Rescinding DACA is both cruel and bad economic policy.

The President has yet again acted as a catalyst for widespread fear in Latino communities and across the country. Ending DACA just days after issuing presidential pardon to racist convicted criminal Joe Arpaio and as thousands are displaced by a Category 4 storm in Texas, demonstrates moral bankruptcy and sends a clear message that this Administration does not care about Latinos.

An overwhelming 78% of American voters support allowing Dreamers the opportunity to stay in the U.S., including the majority of Trump voters. Yet, the President gave in to pressure from Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton and nine other states to phase out a policy that helps our nation thrive.

Americans deserve leadership, which upholds our nation’s values and promotes unity over division. Therefore, we are calling upon Congress to pass the DREAM Act immediately. Congress has the power and obligation to reject the President’s decision and instill hope back into our communities. We are also calling upon President Trump to reconsider his decision and to provide flexibilities for DACA recipients to pursue other immigration avenues. In an era where Latinos are forced to live in uncertainty and fear, it is time for our lawmakers to step up and pass a permanent solution to our country’s broken immigration system. Dreamers are America’s children and we will continue to fight until they are given a path to citizenship.”


Speaker Ryan Press Office

Statement on DACA Program

WASHINGTON—House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) issued the following statement following the Trump administration's announcement to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program:

“However well-intentioned, President Obama’s DACA program was a clear abuse of executive authority, an attempt to create law out of thin air. Just as the courts have already struck down similar Obama policy, this was never a viable long-term solution to this challenge. Congress writes laws, not the president, and ending this program fulfills a promise that President Trump made to restore the proper role of the executive and legislative branches. But now there is more to do, and the president has called on Congress to act. The president’s announcement does not revoke permits immediately, and it is important that those affected have clarity on how this interim period will be carried out. At the heart of this issue are young people who came to this country through no fault of their own, and for many of them it’s the only country they know. Their status is one of many immigration issues, such as border security and interior enforcement, which Congress has failed to adequately address over the years. It is my hope that the House and Senate, with the president’s leadership, will be able to find consensus on a permanent legislative solution that includes ensuring that those who have done nothing wrong can still contribute as a valued part of this great country.”

Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL)


Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) released the following statement today regarding Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ announcement that the Trump Administration plans to rescind the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program in six months:
“I have long supported accommodating those brought to this country illegally through no fault of their own. However, I have always felt that President Obama's executive action was unconstitutional and that the right way to address this issue was through legislation. Congress now has less than six months to deal with this the right way, through the legislative process. It is important that the White House clearly outline what kind of legislation the president is willing to sign. We have no time to waste on ideas that do not have the votes to pass or that the president won’t sign.”