DACA details underneath the sewage


Donald Trump speaks to a crowd at the University of Iowa Field house on Tuesday Jan 26, 2016. Trump is currently tied in Iowa with Ted Cruz. (The Daily Iowan/Jordan Gale)

Sarah Watson, [email protected]

Politicians in Washington are trying to find a compromise concerning the fate of immigrants whose parents brought them to the U.S. illegally as children, and on Jan. 11, The Washington Post reported that the president asked why the United States was “having all these people from sh*thole countries come here?”

President Donald Trump was referring to Haiti, El Salvador, and African countries in a bipartisan meeting discussing protections for immigrants from those countries. His comments have sparked sharp criticism from many and vague denials from others.

The meeting was part of a larger ongoing immigration debate in Washington, the center of which includes the fate of 800,000 “Dreamers” once covered under the Obama-era immigration policy called DACA.

The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program originally began in 2012 for illegal immigrants who came into the country as children to be granted a two-year renewable period of security from deportation and eligibility to gain a work permit or pursue school.

The Trump administration announced in September that it would end DACA starting in March unless replaced with legislation to give the DACA recipients, known as “Dreamers,” a path to more permanent legal status.

In Iowa, nearly 2,800 young people had been approved for DACA services as of March 2017.

RELATED: DACA students’ choices slim when applying to medical school

Lawmakers are working to produce an immigration compromise while also negotiating a budget to avoid a potential government shutdown Friday, but that has been punctuated by politicians’ comments or lack thereof on Trump’s word usage.

“I feel like sometimes he says stuff to distract from the real point, and this is something to distract [people],” UI student Xiomara Santana said. “I think his comment was completely inappropriate, and no president should say that.”

“As a country founded on principles of a refuge, it’s disheartening that our leadership no longer appears to actively embrace that value,” Alex Bare, the committee chair of justice and equity of the UI Student Government said in response to Trump’s comments.

The UI Student Government supports a no-strings-attached solution to allow Dreamers a path to citizenship.

UISG Vice President Lilián Sánchez said she thinks the Dreamers policy has become too partisan, with politicians trying to advocate for just what their party wants and that deviates from the purpose behind the Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors act.

“We should look at this issue for what it is, which is a human-rights issue and an opportunity issue to ensure people who want to pursue an education get the chance to do so,” Sanchez said about policies to be included in potential legislation. “Having an education has opened up so many opportunities in my life, and I would hate for somebody just as qualified as me to not have those same opportunities as me based on their documentation status.”

The UI has also made several statements about continuing to support student DACA recipients.

A judge in Northern California ruled Jan. 13 to force the government to continue to renew DACA coverage while pending lawsuits were being resolved, according to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.

Attorney General Jeff Sessions said on Tuesday that the Trump administration will ask the U.S. Supreme Court to overturn that ruling.

UI College Republicans Vice President Kyle Apple said he hopes a solution will come out of the immigration talks that will allow Dreamers to obtain legal status but will also add more border security. He fears, though, that comments will distract from getting a measure passed.

He also said he believes Trump’s comments were misunderstood. He thought Trump was bluntly describing living conditions, he said, but that was taken out of context and portrayed as an attack on the people.

Facebook Comments