Now that a deal has been reached to end the government shutdown today, the next step is for Congress to debate a legislative solution for the illegal immigrants who have been protected from deportation under DACA, but the first statement from the White House emphasizes that Democrats have little reason to celebrate.
As Streiff pointed out earlier today, Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) led his caucus into a government shutdown in exchange for nothing more than a promise that DACA will be debated, but no actual concessions on what the bill might include.
With recent polling showing that the American people were not willing to blame the shutdown solely on Republicans, and that avoiding a shutdown was a higher priority than an immediate fix to DACA, Schumer likely realized he was not in the strongest of bargaining positions, but the fact Senate Democrats caved so quickly and for so little still surprised many in the political world.
Communications from the White House show that President Donald Trump is far from supportive. Earlier today, White House Deputy Press Secretary Raj Shah told CNN’s Wolf Blitzer that the Durbin-Graham DACA proposal was “not meaningful immigration reform” and “not a proposal the President can sign,” for inadequate improvements to border security, the visa lottery system, and chain migration.
“If we take a step in the wrong direction,” said Shah, referring to the Durbin-Graham proposal, “the President can’t support that.”
The first official statement from the President reaffirms this position, saying that now that the shutdown was ending, his Administration was willing to “work toward solving the problem of very unfair illegal immigration.”
“We will make a long-term deal on immigration, if, and only if, it is good for our country,” he concluded.
Trump on Senate voting to end govt shutdown: "We will make a long-term deal on immigration if, and only if, it is good for our country."
That… does not sound promising for DACA. pic.twitter.com/RjEMgYgge3
— Jennifer Bendery (@jbendery) January 22, 2018
To be clear, we shut down the government for three days, burned untold taxpayer dollars with the wasteful efforts of shutting down government agencies and furloughing employees, only to be in the exact same position we were last week: the President who campaigned on tough immigration policies remains highly skeptical of any proposals from Democrats or moderate Republicans and has not agreed to sign any permanent legislative fix for DACA.
Let’s not forget this is a mess created by both Democrats and Republicans. They haven’t managed to pass a budget completely and on time since 1997.
If Congress is curious why they have such low approval ratings, it’s nonsense like this.
Follow Sarah Rumpf on Twitter: @rumpfshaker.