President Donald Trump called for legal status for roughly 800,000 illegal immigrants in a tweet Tuesday and said if Congress can’t accomplish it he might revisit his reversal of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) amnesty program.
“Congress now has 6 months to legalize DACA (something the Obama Administration was unable to do),” Trump tweeted. “If they can’t, I will revisit this issue!”
Congress now has 6 months to legalize DACA (something the Obama Administration was unable to do). If they can’t, I will revisit this issue!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 6, 2017
The tweet from Trump came after he announced a rollback of Obama’s DACA program, and said it is up to Congress to fix the issue.
“Congress now has the opportunity to advance responsible immigration reform that puts American jobs and American security first,” Trump said in a statement following Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ announcement about the rescinding of DACA. Trump’s call for a legislative amnesty is a departure from his campaign rhetoric in which he said there would be “no amnesty.”
Protecting DACA recipients, however, is a popular stance with many GOP lawmakers. “It is my hope that the House and Senate, with the president’s leadership, will be able to find consensus on a permanent legislative solution that includes ensuring that those who have done nothing wrong can still contribute as a valued part of this great country,” House Speaker Paul Ryan said in a statement Tuesday. Protecting illegal immigrants who arrived as children is also supported by 78 percent of registered voters, according to a recent poll.
It will have to be seen if lawmakers can agree on an immigration reform bill. North Carolina Rep. Mark Meadows said Tuesday that there would have to be additional border security measures before any legislative amnesty could be discussed.