Today is March 5th and the Dreamers still live in fear. Through all the political rhetoric over the immigration status of the Dreamers over the last few months, the March 5th deadline loomed over everyone, the right, the left and the Dreamers. It was supposed to be the defining moment for immigration reform. Guess what? Today is the 5th and the Dreamers still live in fear.
The answer is simple, immigrants are fodder for the political class of the United States.
Immigrants lube the economic engine of the United States, but no one, neither the voters nor the politicos want to admit that because once you take away the immigration debate, the politicos are left with nothing to distract the voters with.
On September 5, 2017, Donald Trump ended the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, also known as the Dreamers protection. Protection, instead of legislation because DACA was implemented by the Barack Obama administration to protect undocumented immigrants brought into the United States as children. This is where the Dreamer Odyssey began.
Obama promised to fix the immigration problem, like his predecessors, when he ran for office. Obama may have wanted to solve the immigration issue, but ultimately, the immigration issue was put on the back-burner by Obama so that he could focus on ObamaCare, or the Affordable Healthcare Act. Obama used his political capital on ObamaCare and as result the best he could do was to temporarily protect 800,000 Dreamers through an Executive Order.
But this is not just an Obama failure because George W. Bush also promised immigration reform as he strode into office only to ignore it because he felt slighted by Vicente Fox’s vote against the invasion of Iraq at the United Nations.
This is a politico problem with both sides of the political spectrum using immigrants as political fodder.
When Donald Trump ended Obama’s DACA order, all three sides, Trump, the Republicans and the Democrats took to the airwaves and promised a solution because they “cared” about the Dreamers. Yes, Trump ended DACA, but he also argued that he wanted Congress to fix the issue through legislation.
Trump is right. An Executive Order is temporary, subject to the whim of any president. It provides a temporary, albeit, incomplete solution to a complex problem.
Although much pontification of a “solution” was made, the result is that the Dreamers still live in limbo. They have neither long-term protection – unable to make life decisions – and new entrants into DACA are now impossible.
But, but, some of you may be thinking, the Supreme Court ruled that the government must continue to process DACA renewals. Under DACA, the recipients are given two-year permits to work and avoid deportation. Every two-years they must reapply. But, as of now, new applications into the DACA program are not possible.
The Democrats shutdown the government for a weekend and pontificated about how they would not “deal” with Donald Trump, if the Dreamers weren’t included.
Donald Trump promised he would sign any legislation Congress put on his desk. Trump then added that without money for The Wall, there would be no signature.
The Republicans vacillated between no amnesty and a solution for the Dreamers.
In the end, nothing.
The government is now operating under a two-year spending pact that adds trillions in government debt.
The DACA program did not get resolved. Trump did not get The Wall money he demanded. The taxpayers will now pay more for the debt that is being incurred.
In other words, nothing was accomplished.
As for the Dreamers, they continue to live in fear because for the politicos, they are nothing more than fodder for the next election.