During a meeting at the White House on Tuesday, Donald Trump offered several coherent, presidential thoughts on immigration reform and whether or not Congress will pass a bill to protect DACA recipients.
Here are two exchanges which show how “on the ball” President Trump is on this matter.
First, Senator Diane Feinstein asked if Trump would support a “clean” DACA bill independent of any other legislation—something he seemed amenable to! Until House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy jumped in to explain what he really thought.
The transcript reads as follows (emphasis mine):
FEINSTEIN: As you know, we tried for comprehensive immigration reform in the Senate. It was on the floor, there were a number of amendments and it got a lot of attention in the Judiciary committee and then the House didn’t take it up. Ithink there needs to be a willingness on both sides and I think—and I don’t know how you would feel about this, but I’d like to ask the question—what about a clean DACA bill now with a commitment that we go into a comprehensive immigration reform procedure like we did back...when Kennedy was here. It was really a major, major effort. And it was a great disappointment that it went nowhere.
TRUMP: I have no problem — I think that’s basically what Dick [Durbin] is saying. We’re going to come out with DACA. We will do DACA and then we can start immediately on phase two which would be comprehensive.
FEINSTEIN: Would you be agreeable to that?
TRUMP: Yeah, I would like to do that. I think a lot of people would like to see that. But I think we have to do DACA first.
MCCARTHY: Mr. President, you need to be clear though. I think what Senator Feinstein’s asking here—when we talk about just DACA, we don’t want to be back here two years later. You have to have security, as the secretary would tell you.
TRUMP: But I think that’s what she’s saying.
(MANY VOICES): No, no.
MCCARTHY: No, I think she is saying something different.
And here is another detailed, cogent summation of what a clean DACA bill actually entails:
I think a clean DACA bill, to me, is a DACA bill, but we take care of the 800,000 people ... but I think, to me, a clean bill is a bill of DACA, we take care of them, and we also take care of security.
Glad we cleared that up.