It is now day 29 of the longest government shutdown in our nations history. Tensions are high, but President Trump has put forth yet another attempt to reopen the government through a bipartisan approach to border and immigration reform. Early leaks of the proposal include extra protection to DACA recipients and those in the U.S. under the TPS system in exchange for the $5.7 billion in wall funding
Even before officially rolling out his proposal, Nancy Pelosi called the rumored plan a “non-starter.” It is clear there is little to no willingness to make any form of compromise on the part of democrats.
President Trump began his statement shortly after 4:00 pm. He starts off by expressing his admiration for those who immigrate here legally, and exclaims his openness for immigration from all parts of the world.
He goes on to say the current system is broken, and there exists a ‘humanitarian and security crisis’ which “requires urgent action.” He covers many of the same point brought up in his last oval office address. The costs of drugs, crime, wage suppression, and strain on taxpayers were all brought up.
The proposed plan he is putting forward comes from his border security advisers. He describes it as a “common sense compromise,” which both sides should embrace.
He begins with a call for $800 million in urgent assistance to the humanitarian crisis at the Southern border along with $805 billion for new high tech drug detection equipment to tackle the massive drug overflow into the nation.
The proposal also includes 2,750 new boarder patrol agents, and 75 federal judges to help process the hundreds of thousands of illegal immigration and asylum claims. President Trump finds the long process for deportation unreasonable, but has no plans to change it as it is a duty of Congress to make those rules.
He also wants a new system for minors to apply for asylum in their home country in order to keep them safe from vicious coyotes, and prevent any harm or separation from their parents.
The most controversial part was his $5.7 billion request for a ‘strategic barrier,’ also known as a the steel slate wall. He pointed out correctly that we already have hundreds of miles of fencing and other barriers on our border. This would add 230 additional miles of wall. As he said, this is not immoral, it is compassionate toward American citizens.
Most of these have been proposed or supported by democrats in the past. No reason for them to deny them now. The only clear reason why they come out against it is because they hate who proposed it.
President Trump made some large concessions. There will be 3 additional years of protection for DACA and TPS recipients. Under the plan, they would have access to SSN’s, and work permits. This would give Congress additional time to come up with a long term solution while those protected will have temporary peace of mind. Temporary Protected Status is given to those whose deportation is deemed too dangerous due to ongoing violence in their home country.
President Trump told the public Mitch McConnell will bring this bill to the Senate floor within the week. If he were to bring it forward after reopening the government, there would be no reason for the Democrats to come to the table. Waiting until after the shutdown ends will not result in any fix.
He also indicated he will start weekly bipartisan meetings to solve the immigration crisis with a more permanent and long term solution.
You can watch the full speech below:
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