President Donald Trump has blamed Congressional Democrats for rejecting a deal for border wall funding in exchange for extended protection for DACA-recipients.
‘The Democrats do not want to help DACA. Would be so easy to make a deal!’ Trump tweeted on Monday, after negotiations in Washington DC derailed ahead of a critical budget deadline on Friday.
Democrats on Monday rejected a White House offer to extend protections for young illegal immigrants for 30 months in exchange for $25 billion in funding for a wall on the southern border, congressional aides said.
The development came as talks continued on a massive $1.3 trillion catchall spending bill, with action needed by Friday to avoid another federal government shutdown.
Trump inspects border wall prototypes in San Diego last week. Democrats in Congress have rejected his proposal to trade $25billion in wall funding for extended DACA protections
Young illegal immigrants march in New York last month. Democrats demanded protections for a broader pool of immigrants than the some 600,000 that are signed up for DACA,
The bill would implement last month’s budget agreement, providing 10 percent increases for the Pentagon and domestic agencies.
Coupled with last year’s tax cuts, it heralds the return of trillion-dollar budget deficits as soon as the budget year starting in October.
While most of the funding issues in the enormous measure have been sorted out, fights involving a number of policy ‘riders’ – so named because they catch a ride on a difficult-to-stop spending bill – continued into the weekend.
Among those riders was a potential deal on DACA-recipients, young illegal immigrants who have been given worth authorization and protection from deportation.
Trump killed the Obama-era program in September, but a court decision has essentially left it in place, for now.
Democrats demanded protections for a broader pool of immigrants than the some 600,000 that are signed up for DACA, a request denied by GOP negotiators, aides said.
Young illegal immigrants march in New York last month. The DACA program expired on March 5, but a court decision has essentially left it in place, for now
Border wall prototypes are seen over the current fence from the Mexican side of the border
That signals that Democrats may be willing to accept wall funding, but they are battling hard against Trump’s demands for big increases for immigration agents and detention beds they fear would enable wide-scale roundups of immigrants illegally living in the US.
It’s unclear what role Trump’s proposals to reduce chain migration and end the diversity lottery played in the negotiations, if any.
Last week, Trump traveled to California last week to inspect prototypes for the wall.
He has continued to push for better physical security at the border, insisting at an event in New Hampshire on Monday that the wall would stop the deadly flow of opioids into the US.
‘Eventually the Democrats will agree with us and we’ll build the wall to keep the damn drugs out,’ he said, with a partisan audience whooping and cheering.
Sounding more like a campaign rally crowd than a group witnessing a presidential address, they shouted: ‘Build that wall! Build that wall!’
Currently, the wall funding pending is $1.6 billion for earlier designs involving sections in Texas that double as levees and 14 miles of replacement fencing in San Diego.