President Donald Trump said on Wednesday he will sign an immigration bill to protect thousands of so-called DREAMers covered by the Obama-era Deferred Action on Childhood Arrivals (DACA) policy only if Congress includes funding for the border wall he has long promised. When he was asked whether he would sign such an immigration package, Trump said, "No, no, no"  and added that "we need the wall for security."

"We need the wall," Trump told reporters during a joint news conference with Norwegian Prime Minister Erna Solberg at the White House. "We have to have the wall for security purposes. Security is number one — and, so, the answer is we have to have the wall."

Trump said, “It’s got to include the wall.” Reiterating his long-standing reasons for the border barrier, the president said, “We need the wall for security. We need the wall for safety. We need the wall for stopping the drugs from pouring in.”

Appearing to express confidence that Congress can come up with a solution for the thousands of DREAMers -- illegal aliens who came to the United States as minors and who benefit from the Obama-era Deferred Action on Childhood Arrivals (DACA) policy -- as part of an overall immigration package. “I really believe they’re going to come up with a solution to the DACA problem … and maybe beyond that immigration as a whole,” Trump said. “But any solution has to include the wall because without the wall, it doesn’t work.”

On Tuesday, Trump had invited 23 lawmakers from both parties to the White House to discuss on camera the possibility of a two-part immigration deal. Part one would be a bill that addresses DACA beneficiaries and bolsters border security, while Part two would include a broader package of immigration reform.

Just hours after the White House meeting, Judge William Alsup of Federal District Court in San Francisco issued a ruling that it was improper for the Trump administration to kill DACA, writing that it must “maintain the DACA program on a nationwide basis” while the legal challenge to the president’s decision in September to end the program moves forward.

On Wednesday, Trump responded to Judge Alsup’s ruling. Trump tweeted that the United States courts system “broken and unfair.” He wrote: “It just shows everyone how broken and unfair our Court System is when the opposing side in a case (such as DACA) always runs to the 9th Circuit and almost always wins before being reversed by higher courts.”

“We find this decision to be outrageous, especially in light of the president’s successful bipartisan meeting with House and Senate members at the White House on the same day,” said White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders in a statement released on Wednesday morning. Sanders said DACA should be addressed by Congress. “President Trump is committed to the rule of law, and will work with members of both parties to reach a permanent solution that corrects the unconstitutional actions taken by the last administration,” Sanders said.

Push-back from conservatives

Fox News host Tucker Carlson uncharacteristically criticized President Trump on Tuesday evening after Trump's conference with members of Congress. Following Trump's somewhat amenable approach to revising and improving DACA, Carlson reflected on Trump's repeated promises to get tough on immigration: "Congress is full of people from both parties who believe that the point of our immigration policy is to provide cheap labor to their donors and to atone for America’s imaginary sins against the world." Carlson said, "They couldn’t care less about immigration’s effect on you or your family. Yet these are the same people the president now says he trusts to write the immigration bill, the one he will sign no matter what it says."

Directing himself at Trump, Carlson asked: "So what was the point of running for president?"

Carlson averred that Trump "clearly has skills as a negotiator," but added "Where were they today? The president signaled he'd be happy to legalize hundreds of thousands of illegal immigrants now, and then at some point in the future, tackle all that other stuff, like making sure they can't bring millions of their relatives from the third world along with them."

Explaining what is at stake with regard to Trump's purported openness to negotiating DACA, and the loss of "leverage" that might entail, Carlson added, "The Democrats' goal is to import more Democratic voters and by any means necessary. Once they retake the Congress and the presidency, and if Trump betrays his base on immigration, that will definitely happen." Carlson said, "It is over," and added, "Say goodbye to borders, they are done. Keep in mind that the top Democrat in the House recently thanked illegal aliens for sneaking into this country. That's how Democrats feel, and they are not pretending anymore."

'New York swells'

Also reacting to Trump's meeting with Congress, author and commentator Ann Coulter appeared to be unhappy with the president's Tuesday comments on DACA. Coulter told Fox News Channel's Lou Dobbs that it was Trump's "lowest day" as president. Appearing to interpret Trump's insistence on "border security" as an admission that no border wall will be built, Coulter later wrote on Twitter,  “But don’t worry!” Coulter tweeted. “There will be ‘border security’! (Political euphemism for: You’re not getting wall.)”

“This DACA lovefest confirms a main thesis of Michael Wolff’s book: When Bannon left. liberal Dems Jared, Ivanka, Cohn & Goldman Sachs took over,” she explained in a reference to the controversial book, “Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House,” about the inner workings of the Trump administration. The president has suggested that he will file libel charges against Michael Wolff, the author of the book.

On January 10, Coulter told Channel 4 television news: "Trump now wants to be liked by New York swells." She suggested during an interview with the UK-based news service that she believes that Trump's insistence on resolving the DACA issue may have well been the work of ousted White House advisor Stephen Bannon. With Bannon "banished from the kingdom," Coulter said, Trump appears willing to "grant amnesty" to illegal aliens. 

Writing in a January 10 column titled "It turns out Bannon was Trump's brain," Coulter wrote of her fears that the White House meeting between Trump and bipartisan representatives of Congress reveals that Trump has doubled over to Democrat's demands to provide amnesty for DACA beneficiaries. Coulter wrote "Trump was more than willing to sell out the base to solve a personal problem of his -- the Michael Wolff book -- but managed to not convince a single American that he's articulate, bright or a good leader."

After recalling that there are currently 50 million illegal aliens in the country and that previous efforts at amnesty have only yielded more illegal immigrants, Coulter concluded: "If there is a silver lining, it's that this isn't the first time Trump has sold out the base. He did it in the March 2016 GOP debate; in his "Hannity" interview in August 2016; in the meeting with tech leaders at Trump Tower in December 2016; and in his meeting with Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer last year. But it's now Trump's second year in office, we don't have a wall, and he just called a meeting to say, over and over again: 'We have to do DACA first.'" 

Coulter sarcastically wrote: "At this point, any sentient person has to see that the most plausible scenario is: 

Lucy's gonna move the football ... 

Lucy's gonna move the football ... 

Lucy's gonna move the football ... 

Lucy's gonna move the football ... 

Lucy's gonna move the football ... 

Lucy's gonna move the football ... 

She moved the football. 

 

 

 

 

 

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Spero News editor Martin Barillas is a former US diplomat, who also worked as a democracy advocate and election observer in Latin America. His first novel 'Shaken Earth', is available at Amazon.

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