WH Issues 70-Point Immigration Plan; Dreamers Get to Stay If Congress Goes Along With Trump

Susan Jones | October 9, 2017 | 8:55am EDT
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The Trump White House released a 70-point immigration plan on Sunday night, to the dismay of liberals. (Photo: Screen grab of Trump giving his weekly radio address)

(CNSNews.com) - The Trump Administration said on Sunday it is “ready to work with Congress” on three immigration objectives: border security (fund and build a southern wall); interior enforcement (uphold immigration laws and return visa overstays); and merit-based immigration (green cards for spouses and minor children only; establish a merit-based system that puts skills ahead of family connections).

The Trump White House released a detailed plan Sunday night, drawing immediate rejection from Democrats and liberal activists.

In joint statement, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer called the plan “anathema to Dreamers,” to immigrants in general, and to the “vast majority” of Americans.

“We told the President at our meeting that we were open to reasonable border security measures alongside the DREAM Act, but this list goes so far beyond what is reasonable. This proposal fails to represent any attempt at compromise,” Schumer and Pelosi wrote.

“The list includes the wall, which was explicitly ruled out of the negotiations. If the President was serious about protecting the Dreamers, his staff has not made a good faith effort to do so.”

The 70-point plan does not mention Dreamers by name. But appearing on “Fox & Friends” Monday morning, Trump adviser Kellyanne Conway said Dreamers should “listen to what the president said.”

Trump is open to a deal on the dreamers, Conway said, as long as congressional Democrats give the Trump administration what it wants in other areas.

Among other things, the plan calls for:

Border Security:

-- Complete construction of the southern border wall, to be paid for in part by allowing the Department of Homeland Security to raise fees from the processing of immigration-benefit applications;
-- Prompt removal of minors, including unaccompanied alien children, and relatives crossing the border illegally.
-- Stricter standards for people who claim asylum;
-- Expand the expedited removal process, including hiring an additional 370 Immigration Judges and 1,000 U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement attorneys;

Interior Enforcement:

-- Stop sanctuary cities by making them ineligible for certain federal grants;
-- Hire an additional 10,000 ICE officers and 300 Federal prosecutors to handle immigration cases and boost law enforcement;
-- End visa overstays;
-- End catch-and-release;
-- Prevent gang members from receiving immigration benefits.
-- Protect U.S. workers by requiring E-Verify and strengthening laws to stop employment discrimination against U.S. workers.

Merit-Based Reforms:

-- End chain migration by limiting family-based green cards to spouses and minor children of immigrants who are here legally;
-- Establish a point-based system for awarding green cards that protects U.S. workers and taxpayers, encourages assimilation, and ensures the financial self-sufficiency of newcomers;
-- Eliminate the ‘Diversity Visa’ lottery that awards 50,000 green cards at random to foreign nationals, many of whom have absolutely no ties to the United States, no special skills, and limited education;
-- Set the number of refugees at an ‘appropriate level’.

Kellyanne Conway told "Fox & Friends" on Monday, "The message to the Dreamers is that, listen to what the president said. He said he’s open to a deal, open to figuring out a way to – to have broader immigration policy that certainly addresses DACA, the so-called Dreamer program, but along with all these other critical functions.

"So they should actually be calling their friends Chuck and Nancy to say, you know, are you going to give up this deal because you don’t want -- why don’t you want a border wall constructed? Why don’t you want more immigration judges and agents? And why isn’t it a reasonable policy to limit chain migration, and also to stop these visa overstays? And to make sure people that are flouting the law once they’re here – go back."

The American Civil Liberties Union called the detailed plan a “Dreamer deportation outline” written by Trump senior adviser Stephen Miller.

“Miller’s wishlist of anti-immigrant policies is designed to scuttle progress for Dreamers and is afoul with unconstitutional ‘reforms,” said Lorella Praeli, the ACLU’s director of immigration policy and campaigns.

“Members of Congress of both parties who want to resolve the status of undocumented immigrant youth should recognize that these policies are a non-starter and get back to work on behalf of the vast majority of Americans who want to get something constructive done instead,” Praeli said.

As of Monday morning, President Trump had not tweeted about his immigration plan or otherwise commented on it.

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