President Donald Trump and Democrats appear to have agreed on a framework for a legislative replacement for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals—the Obama-era program that shielded nearly 800,000 undocumented immigrants from the threat of deportation and allowed them to legally work.
Senate and House minority leaders Chuck Schumer (D-N,Y.) and Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) on Wednesday announced that they had agreed to hammer out a deal with the president that protected Dreamers but would not include funding for a border wall—at least not yet. The next day, Trump all but confirmed the announcement on Twitter, but disputed the assertion that any “deal” had been brokered. His subsequent statements on the issue throughout Thursday only added to the confusion.
“We’re working on a plan for DACA, people want to see that happen,” Trump told reporters before leaving for Florida on Thursday. “You have 800,000 young people brought here no fault of their own. We’re working on a plan, we’ll see how it works out. But we’re going to get massive border security as a part of that.”
When asked about the construction of a border wall, he said that would “come later.” He then added, “We’re right now renovating large sections of wall, massive sections.”
Trump’s series of contradictory statements have ignited a fierce backlash among his supporters. His remarks, which echoed his tweets earlier Thursday morning calling for empathy regarding DACA recipients, added to the mounting anger from his anti-immigration fans.
— Sean Hannity (@seanhannity) September 14, 2017
At this point, who DOESN'T want Trump impeached? https://t.co/g1mMhmm8ng
— Ann Coulter (@AnnCoulter) September 14, 2017
Prominent members of his base were also divided over what possible amnesty would look like under the Trump administration. When asked if he supported amnesty, Trump responded on Thursday, “The word is DACA.”
“We’re not looking at citizenship,” Trump said. “We’re not looking at amnesty. We’re looking at allowing people to stay here.”
When does American working class w/out real wage increase in 15yrs & who send their kids to overcrowded public schools get amnesty?
— Laura Ingraham (@IngrahamAngle) September 14, 2017
@realDonaldTrump Morn news says u made deal w Schumer on DACA/hv ur staff brief me/ I know u undercut JudiCimm effort 4 biparty agreement
— ChuckGrassley (@ChuckGrassley) September 14, 2017
Conservative commentator radio host Bill Mitchell was less harsh, claiming supporters threatening to abandon Trump over a possible deal with Democrats on DACA were bluffing:
Please, anyone who is "done with Trump" over this #DACA negotiation, please just go away and stay away. Tired of the on-and-off crowd.
— Bill Mitchell (@mitchellvii) September 14, 2017