Here’s further proof to take just about anything coming from the Trump White House with a grain of salt. Last night, DHS said it would continue DACA, a popular Obama-era program that has allowed nearly 800,000 immigrant youth to work legally, live free from fear of deportation, and thrive in the only country they call home. As the New York Times noted earlier today, Trump pledged during his campaign to undo the program—red meat for his racist base—“but once in office, Mr. Trump faced a new reality: the political risks of targeting for deportation a group of people who are viewed sympathetically by many Americans.”
But then later today, the New York Times reported that the administration pulled a full about-face on DACA: “White House officials said Friday morning that Mr. Trump had not made a decision about the long-term fate of the program and might yet follow through on a campaign pledge to take away work permits from the immigrants or deport them.” So, Trump got his positive headlines from the fake news outlets he hates, then dropped the bomb telling undocumented youth that their futures in the U.S. continue to be in limbo.
But wait, there’s more, because as the Trump regime pretends to give with one hand, it gives the finger with the other, also announcing last night that it was formally rescinding an unimplemented 2014 immigration program intended to protect the undocumented immigrant parents of U.S. citizens and permanent residents from deportation. Make no mistake, this is yet another attack on immigrant families, because the very parents who would have benefitted from this program yesterday are getting deported today. “Great heart” on immigration indeed.
Deferred Action for Parents of Americans (DAPA) was announced in 2014 by President Obama following the Republican Congress’s inaction on immigration reform, but it was immediately blocked by a partisan lawsuit from Republican governors and attorneys general of 26 states, a decision later upheld by a deadlocked Supreme Court. DAPA was languishing in limbo until yesterday, when the Trump admin formally threw it in the trash heap. Yesterday also happened to be the fifth anniversary of DACA. With an administration as vindictive as this one, it’s hard to believe this wasn’t purely coincidental.
What we do know is that this administration lies, often and about the most inconsequential shit. It’s why immigrant rights leaders stressed during a press call earlier today that while they will continue fighting for protections for themselves and their families, they remain on high alert due to the fact that DACA recipients are being “framed, stalked, detained, and deported,” despite reassurances from Trump and DHS Sec. John Kelly that they would do none of that.