What Editorials Are Saying About DACA

Trump accused of 'cowardice,' but Obama takes flak as well
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 6, 2017 8:11 AM CDT
What Editorials Are Saying About DACA
Minjung Park, a student at the University of California, Irvine, speaks to supporters of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program in Irvine Tuesday.   (Mark Rightmire/The Orange County Register via AP)

President Trump's DACA decision—to end protection for young immigrants brought to the country illegally as kids and punt the issue back to Congress—is a hot topic on the nation's editorial pages. Here's a sampling:

  • Wall Street Journal: The newspaper complains that Trump was "at his worst" when he went after Dreamers in the campaign but thinks that Obama was "at his most cynical" when he instituted DACA on iffy legal grounds. The editors see Obama's action as a calculated political decision, one that "teed up this moral crisis." Also at its "worst"? The GOP for making this issue a priority now. Regardless of all that, it's now up to Congress to protect these young immigrants, and to do so without using them as political weapons.

  • New York Times: Its editorial accuses Trump of "cowardice" for sending Jeff Sessions out to do the "dirty work" of announcing the move and suggests Trump doesn't even understand the implications of the decision. "DACA is morally right, legally sound and fiscally smart policy," the editors write. "It was also the only humane choice Mr. Obama had in the face of Congress’s failure to pass any meaningful immigration reform in the last two decades."
  • National Review: Trump made the right move because "DACA is an extralegal amnesty at odds with our constitutional system," write the editors. They urge Republican lawmakers to use the next six months wisely to win border-security measures from Democrats (such as E-verify for all hires nationwide) in exchange for codifying DACA.
  • Washington Post: The editors call the move "heartless" in terms of the Dreamers but says it could hurt the US economy, too. "By subverting the employment and educational prospects of so many promising young people, Mr. Trump has sapped their earnings and purchasing power, withdrawn their college prospects and imperiled their jobs," they write. No wonder so many corporate execs are in opposition. "Now, unless Congress acts, the United States will suffer along with the dreamers."
  • Breitbart: It's not an editorial, but a post at the site suggests that Trump blew it when he tweeted Tuesday night that he would "revisit" the issue if Congress failed to legalize DACA. Trump just gave away his leverage and ticked off supporters who would be happy to see DACA end, period. "Trump’s base might be willing to accept a compromise on DACA at the end of six months, but not at the start," writes Joel Pollak.
  • Los Angeles Times: "Pure cruelty" declares the editorial's headline. "What public good is achieved by yanking such people from their homes, families and communities and sending them to countries where they are strangers and often don’t even speak the language?" The fix: Congress must resurrect the DREAM Act and give these youths a path to citizenship.
(More immigration stories.)

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