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McClatchy: Trump Aides Plot a Big Immigration Deal—That Breaks a Campaign Promise

McClatchy reports that a number of White House officials, including former and current White House Chiefs of Staff Reince Priebus and John Kelly, President Trump’s daughter Ivanka Trump, and Vice President Mike Pence, want the president to strike an ambitious deal with Congress that offers Dreamers protection in exchange for legislation that pays for the border wall, more detention facilities, legal immigration curbs, and the implementation of E-Verify.

Looks like very distinct possibility DACA will end.

On August 24, 2017, news outlets—including Axios and the Washington Post—reported that the Trump administration is considering ending the DACA program. Some information indicated that an announcement could be imminent. However, today, Elise Foley of The Huffington Post tweeted that a DHS spokesman said no decision would come today. AILA will continue to monitor the situation, and post updates as we receive them. AILA has issued statements calling for Trump to keep DACA in place and for Congress to pass the DREAM Act.

Bipartisan Dream Act Introduced in the House of Representatives

Representatives Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL) and Lucille Roybal-Allard (D-CA) introduced the House version of the Dream Act of 2017, which would provide young people who were brought to the United States as children the chance to apply for lawful permanent resident (LPR) status if they meet certain requirements. The Dream Act of 2017 was introduced in the Senate by Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Lindsey Graham (R-SC) on July 20, 2017.

Washington Post: Democratic State Attorneys General Urge Trump to Keep DACA, Say It Has Boosted Economy

The Washington Post reports that New Mexico Attorney General Hector Balderas on Friday joined 19 other Democratic attorneys general in urging President Donald Trump to keep the under-threat DACA program. In a letter to the president, the attorneys general said the 800,000 recipients of the DACA program have been a boon to universities and employers. “They are our neighbors, co-workers, students and community and church leaders,” the letter stated. “And they are boosting the economies and communities of our states every day.”

Success Story of person escaping violence

An article in the Washington Post shares the immigration story of Miguel Aguilar, who at age 11 fled his hometown in Mexico to escape escalating violence, and who now plays professional soccer for the D.C. United team. Two-and-a-half years ago, Mr. Aguilar was granted DACA, and is believed to be the first DACA recipient to sign a major league sports contract.

Thousands of DACA Recipients Are Losing Their Work Permits

Thousands of DACA recipients are suddenly losing their ability to work legally, because USCIS is struggling to renew their employment authorization documents on time. Over 11,000 young immigrants, roughly 5% of the total number of DACA renewals that USCIS has approved so far, have had their DACA status and work permits expire in spite of having applied on time.

DREAMERS and Immigration Reform. What is needed?

Immigration Reform is here and Dreamers can get a work permit and get to be here legally if they qualify. Brian Lerner states that Dreamers has been able to apply for DACA or Deferred Action for the last 2-3 years. However, with the new immigration reform for Dreamers, we now have an expanded DACA and more people will qualify for Dreamers.

 

Brian D. Lerner, Immigration Attorney states that the following list is the general requirements of the immigration reform for Dreamers:

The program will be open to individuals who:

 

  1. Came to the United States before reaching your 16th birthday;
  2. Have continuously resided in the United States since January 1, 2010, up to the present time;
  3. Were physically present in the United States on June 15, 2012, and at the time of making your request for consideration of deferred action with USCIS;
  4. Had no lawful status on June 15, 2012;
  5. Are currently in school, have graduated or obtained a certificate of completion from high school, have obtained a general education development (GED) certificate, or are an honorably discharged veteran of the Coast Guard or Armed Forces of the United States; and
  6. Have not been convicted of a felony, significant misdemeanor,or three or more other misdemeanors, and do not otherwise pose a threat to national security or public safety.

Brian Lerner, immigration attorney states that the difference between this immigration reform for Dreamers and the last Immigration Reform for Dreamers is that it first takes out the upper age requirement. Basically, one could not be older than 31 years old at the time that the first immigration reform Dreamers was made. Now, they can be as old as they are. However, the applicant, in accordance with Brian D. Lerner, must have not been older than 16 years old when he or she entered the United States.

See Brian D. Lerner speak about the immigration reform news 2014 about the new DACA

Additionally, another element with the new immigration reform is that instead of having to be physically present from all the way back in 2007, they can now show that they have been physically present since 2010. Otherwise, the immigration reform for Dreamers is basically the same. One item of concern is that you have to look at the last item regarding the criminal history of the applicant. Now, with the new immigration reform for Dreamers, there is also a rather comprehensive memo from the director of Department of Homeland Security which makes clear that someone may be under priority 1, priority 2 or priority 3 or no priority at all for immigration enforcement. Thus, there is the interplay between the immigration reform for Dreamers requirement that somebody not have been convicted of a felony or significant misdemeanor or 3 or more other misdemeanors and how that interacts with the enforcement memo. Brian Lerner also states that the definition of what is a ‘significant’ misdemeanor and/or felony seems to have been clarified somewhat by the new priority memo. Assumably, if somebody qualifies for the immigration reform for Dreamers, they will not be deported – even if under a certain priority category for enforcement.  Brian Lerner states we will have to see how this plays out and hope that the immigration officials will follow properly the executive order as well as the new policy memorandum on enforcement priorities.


As  usual, with immigration reform for Dreamers, there are questions and ambiguities and issues that need to be resolved. However, in the end, it is a good expansion of the immigration reform for Dreamers and is constitutional under the law.

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