Former President Barack Obama released a statement today blasting Donald Trump’s decision to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, also known as DACA. Obama signed the executive order creating the program in June 2012 and sees ending it as a move that’s “contrary to our spirit, and to common sense.”
The Trump administration has tried to shift blame to Obama, saying that the move was unconstitutional. Obama shot back, saying in his statement that he had waited for a bill to sign, but Congress never sent him one. He refused to leave innocent children brought to this country in limbo:
“Ultimately, this is about basic decency. This is about whether we are a people who kick hopeful young strivers out of America, or whether we treat them the way we’d want our own kids to be treated. It’s about who we are as a people – and who we want to be.”
Obama got to the heart of the matter when he talked about law versus politics, and it’s really what the DACA program is all about:
“Let’s be clear: the action taken today isn’t required legally. It’s a political decision, and a moral question.”
So while the program itself is up for legal debate, there is a way to make it legal by the legislative process that Trump refuses to pursue. By preaching immigration reform, Trump is really putting the lives of nearly 1 million young people on the line to try to force Congress to pay for his stupid wall. Obama is right, this isn’t about DACA being legal at all. It’s about abusing power to get what you want.
Most of Trump’s Republican colleagues are outraged by this move, as well. Good to see that the right thing is still a popular move in this day and age. Whether they’ll actually do something to help Dreamers is yet to be seen.
Watch a news clip on Obama’s statement here:
Feature image via YouTube screengrab.