California representatives respond to Trump’s decision on DACA

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On Tuesday Morning U.S. Attorney General Jefferson Beauregard Sessions announced the Trump Administration was ending the DACA program (Deferred Action for Child Arrivals), a program that President Barack Obama put in place to protect undocumented immigrant children that were brought to the United States as young children from deportation. There are a reported 800,000 “DREAMERS” in the program, 76 percent of them have jobs, 45 percent have jobs and are in school, and 20 percent are just in school. Eighty-nine percent have pursued or re in higher education and a majority reported they have received better paying jobs.

DACA participants have a lower incarceration rate than native-born people: .98 percent to 1.12 percent. They contribute to federal, state and local treasuries with their taxes, plus they contribute to the Social Security system, despite not being able to benefit from it.

Sessions delivered his speech in front of the media without taking any questions.

Several of California’s Congressional representatives expressed their feelings about the president’s decision.

Congressperson Karen Bass: “Trump’s emphatic lack of empathy continues to destroy our communities and stain our reputation abroad. DREAMers aren’t just “other country’s kids.” Especially in Los Angeles, they are students, teachers, coaches, mentors, entrepreneurs and community leaders from every continent. They’re from Asia, Africa, and Latin America. They’re friends and they’re family. I stand with DREAMers here in Los Angeles and throughout the entire country. We will make this right.”

Congressman Tony Cárdenas: “In February of this year, President Donald Trump said he was going to ‘show great heart’ in dealing with the Deferred Action Childhood Arrivals Program. He lied. Trump’s move to purposefully hurt these young people, who contribute to our economy and our communities, shows anything but the ‘great heart’ he promised. What’s more, today the President was unwilling to stand up and admit that he lied to the American people.

In California alone, the loss of DREAMers will cost our economy $11 billion in one year. Across the country, we will lose over $460 billion from the national GDP over the next decade. That’s the loss of millions of American jobs.

Trump has claimed time and again that he will be the best economic president in history. He’s said, ‘I will be the greatest jobs president that God ever created.’ He lied. He’s doing everything he can to hurt the American economy and American workers.

Moving forward, I will continue to work with my Democrat and Republican colleagues to pass comprehensive immigration reform once and for all. It’s past time to get down to work to supercharge our economy and do the right thing for American families and the American economy.”

Congresswoman Lucille Royal-Allard: “The president’s action to end DACA in six months is outrageous. This is a heartbreaking day for our country, and for the bright young DACA recipients who know no home but America.  Our country needs these young people and their talents more than ever to strengthen our economy and our society.  President Trump’s decision to end DACA is cruel, destructive, and un-American.  The United States is a nation built in large part by the contributions, innovations, and inventions of immigrants. The president’s action against DACA only weakens the United States.

“I will continue fighting in Congress to pass legislation that will permanently protect DACA recipients before the six months expire.  That is why I have joined Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen in introducing the DREAM Act of 2017, a bipartisan bill allowing U.S.-raised immigrant youth to earn lawful permanent residence and American citizenship.  And it is why I have helped introduce the American Hope Act of 2017, which creates a path to permanent legal status and eventual citizenship for DACA recipients and all qualifying DREAMers brought to the US as children.  I call on my fellow congressmembers to join me in supporting these bills, so that we may help these American youth continue to strengthen our country.”

Congresswoman Barbara Lee: “The United States of America is, has been, and will always be a nation of immigrants. As such, our immigration policies should be focused on keeping families together, not tearing them apart.

 “Undocumented students who were brought to the U.S. through no fault of their own are working, going to school, living their lives, and contributing billions to the American economy. For five years, the  Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program has allowed these innocent young adults to remain united with their families and safely reside in their communities.

 “Ending DACA in order to deport its nearly 800,000 recipients is cruel and heartless. Instead of devastating families, President Trump and Republicans should be working toward comprehensive immigration reform to permanently fix our broken immigration system. 

 “Since President Trump has abandoned these young people, Congress must have the courage to do the right thing. I call on my colleagues to pass bipartisan legislation that will give qualified DACA recipients a path to citizenship and move to stop the raids by ICE and CBP in our communities, which undermine public safety and erode trust between local law enforcement and immigrant communities.”

Photos are screenshots from YouTube