A Boutique Immigration Law Firm Serving the Bay Area

Trump Immigration News

Trump's first year in office saw huge changes in immigration policy - Trump Immigration News has been rampant. Numerous Travel Bans were ordered and revoked; H-B1 Visa hopefuls faced mounting difficulties; many saw their Temporary Protected Status end; and the DACA Dreamers remain in limbo as to their status. Here are some updates that the beginning of 2018 have brought us in this Trump Immigration Update.

Government Shutdown Ends

The three day government shutdown ended on January 23rd with the passing of a short-term spending bill that will enable the US government to function for three more weeks while Congress works to create a bipartisan immigration bill that will pass the White House's approval.

The bill keeps the government open for 17 days and extends Chip, a health insurance program that provides coverage to nearly nine million children, for six years, but it does not include any protections or status updates for the hundreds of thousands of DACA Dreamers, who are still waiting for their fate to be decided in legislature.

Dreamers still in Limbo

The Democrats allowed the bill to pass ending the government shutdown without a decision on DACA due to a promise from Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell that he would keep all debate on immigration on a "level playing field."

While the majority of Democrats ultimately accepted McConnell's promise to keep an open mind on immigration reform, there were many who were against the vote. Elizabeth Warren, Bernie Sanders, Cory Booker and Kamala Harris were all amongst those who voted against the short-term spending bill.

Kamala Harris, former US Attorney and potential Democratic Presidential candidate in 2020, was outspoken about her opposition. "I think it would be foolhardy to believe [McConnell] made a commitment," she said.

On Social Media, many of the Dreamers themselves echoed Harris' feelings, and they remain in limbo for another three weeks. ADD HERE

In Search of a White House Supported Solution

So far, efforts for a bipartisan White House supported bill have been unsuccessful. The first bill presented to the President was declared "Dead on Arrival" by the White House as it "did not meet White House requirements on border security."

White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders stated that the legislation brought forth by Republican Senators Lindsey Graham of South Carolina and Jeff Flake of Arizona, and Democratic Senator Dick Durbin of Illinois was "unacceptable" to Trump.

Several members of Congress, such as Republican Senator Lindsey Graham from South Carolina, have openly voiced their frustrations with the administration's lack of decisiveness on the matter.

"One thing I would say to the White House: You better start telling us what you're for rather than what you're against," the South Carolina senator said. "To my friends at the White House, you've been all over the board, you haven't been a reliable partner and the Senate's going to move."

Will There Be a Wall?

Trump has insisted there can be no deal without a wall, but even Republicans are beginning to see the wall as more of an idea than an actual object.

John Cornyn, the second-ranking Senate Republican, who is in the middle of the immigration debate, stated: “We all understand now that the president is speaking metaphorically as much as anything else. Sometimes it’s a fence, sometimes it’s a wall, sometimes it’s a barrier. But it’s always part of a system which includes technology, which includes personnel.”

This way of thinking has appeased many Democrats and immigration activists, who say that as long as it’s not a concrete wall spanning the entire U.S.-Mexico border -- which no one sees as feasible -- it’s not a deal-breaker

“For Democrats the wall is stupid, offensive, wasteful -- a monument to Donald Trump’s vanity and ego,” said Frank Sharry, who runs the pro-immigration group America’s Voice. “But even Republicans have started talking about the wall as a metaphor for border security.”

Even The White House Chief of Staff John Kelly said on Fox News last week that Trump has “evolved” on immigration toward what’s politically possible. Trump, true to form however, followed up Kelly's on-air statement with a Twitter posting that read: “If there is no Wall, there is no Deal!”

The White House Speaks

On January 25th, Senior White House officials announced that President Donald Trump will offering a path to citizenship for current recipients of the DACA program, along with anyone eligible but not currently part of the program - up to 1.8 million young illegal immigrants, in exchange for changes to legal immigration procedures and a $25 billion dollar budget to improve border security and build a border wall with Mexico.

While the details of Trump's plan will only be officially released on Monday, the responses have run the gambit.

According to Reuters, Stephen Legomsky, who was chief counsel at U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services in the Obama administration, called the plan a “horrendous tradeoff” and predicted Democrats would reject it.

A group of immigrant youth called United We Dream said the deal was “pitting us against our own parents, Black immigrants and our communities.” - while Conservative Republican Senator Tom Cotton called the plan “generous and humane, while also being responsible.”

Both sides await to hear more news from the White House on Monday.

Unsure About Your Situation?

If you have any questions about your status and your options in the current immigration climate, please contact us and we can help to answer your questions and get you on the correct immigration track. Everyone's case is unique, so please don't hesitate to get in touch with your questions.