In her column in today’s Washington Post, Jennifer Rubin calls Trump’s ending of DACA, “Trump’s most evil act.”
Her sentiment is shared by a great number of Americans. In a rare case of unity, both Democrats and Republicans are voicing their opposition to the ending of Obama’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program.
But is this criticism valid … or does it miss the point?
President Obama created the DACA program, which exempts children brought to this country illegally by their parents from the enforcement of the immigration laws, through executive order. He was forced to do this after Congress refused to enact such a law.
There has been serious question ever since Obama signed the order as to whether the President had the constitutional authority to do so. After all, our Constitution gives Congress the power over immigration policy.
Prior to today’s action by Trump, Attorneys General from Texas and nine other Republican-led states threatened to sue his administration if it did not rescind the program that grants deportation relief and access to work permits to nearly 800,000 “Dreamers,” or undocumented immigrants brought to the country at a young age.
While everyone may like Obama’s order, which treats the innocent children of illegal immigrants humanely, a valid argument could be made in court that the former president’s action was unconstitutional; that it was a circumvention of the legislative branch.
In rescinding Obama’s order, Trump is now forcing Congress to do its job.
The fact that it is good policy should not “trump” the fact that it, most likely, was bad law.
Trump has given Congress a six-month window to enact a law that would give “Dreamers” the protections afforded by Obama’s executive order.
It is beyond ironic that our current president, who likes to run roughshod over our Constitution, is doing the right thing in protecting the sanctity of the document and reinforcing the separation of powers.
As Trump aptly tweeted today: “Congress, get ready to do your job – DACA!”
Will they finally step up to the plate?
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