President Donald Trump said Tuesday that the inclusion of funding for a border wall is a non-negotiable aspect of his dealings with Democrats eager to secure protections for so-called Dreamers in exchange for immigration enforcement measures.
Trump provided the unequivocal response after he was asked by the press pool if he would be willing to sign a law enshrining protections for illegal immigrants brought to the country as children, absent a Democratic concession on funding for his long promised wall on the southern border.
“You need it. … I’d love not to build the wall, but you need the wall,” Trump told the pool at the White House. “If you don’t have the wall, you can’t have security.”
Trump committed himself once again to pursuing a long term legislative solution for the more than 800,000 illegal immigrants affected by Trump’s rollback of the DACA program, calling such a bill “a bill of love.”
“We have something in common — we’d like to see this get done,” Trump said as he met with 25 members of Congress to discuss the situation Tuesday. “I hope we’re going to come up with an answer for DACA.”
As Republican negotiators move forward on making a deal to increase border security in exchange for some as yet undetermined measure to shield Dreamers from deportation, Trump has refused to back away from his promise to build a wall.
The administration requested $18 billion in funding over the next decade to build the wall Friday.
Trump framed his desire for the wall as a necessary condition for DACA protections in statement to reporters Saturday.
“We all want DACA to happen, but we also want great security for our country,” he said.
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