President Donald Trump has reportedly decided to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program — effective six months from Tuesday, when he will formally announce his decision.
Trump’s decision has, predictably, outraged amnesty activists, and frightened the establishment wing of the Republican Party. But it has also raised alarms among conservatives, who fear Congress could simply legislate amnesty in the next six months.
As frustrating as that may be to those who want to see DACA totally wiped off the books, and every one of its beneficiaries given a one-way bus ticket across the border, letting Congress decide what to do about the “Dreamers” is exactly what ought to happen.
In fact, Congress was poised to do just that in 2012, until then-President Barack Obama decided to ignore the Constitution’s separation of powers and dictate the “Dream Act by fiat” on his own.
The idea of a six-month deadline puts the responsibility, and the pressure back on the legislature. The same should have been done with Obamacare. As Breitbart News predicted — sadly, correctly — in April, “Obamacare Repeal Needs a Deadline or It Will Never Happen.” Had Congress followed the advice of Rep. Mo Brooks (R-AL), and repealed Obamacare effective some date in the future, Congress could have used the interim to find a replacement.
Amnesty opponents can take heart from the fact that this Congress seems incapable of passing anything at all. And if, at the end of six months, Speaker Paul Ryan and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell fail to find consensus on a DACA “fix” then it would appear that Trump’s DACA reversal would be the law of the land. That would give opponents of DACA extra leverage — and put the pressure on those who want to accommodate the “Dreamers.”
Conversely, supporters of DACA have an opportunity they cannot waste. They know they only need a few GOP votes to pass something in either house. But if they insist on retaining 100% of DACA — which covers some 800,000 or so illegal aliens, some of whom are ambitious valedictorians and some of whom are decidedly not — then they will lose all of them.
The key is compromise. This is, and always was, Congress’s choice to make.
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News. He was named one of the “most influential” people in news media in 2016. He is the co-author of How Trump Won: The Inside Story of a Revolution, is available from Regnery. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.