An equal amount, or more, has been written about the meeting in the Oval Office with Sen. Chuck Schumer and Rep. Nancy Pelosi. After conflicting reports of what was agreed upon during the conversation, and after a few days have past, it appears the President agreed to only continue conversations.
A careful study of the stakeholders involved seems to show any sort of DACA-Dreamers success to be remote at best. There appear to be simply too many obstacles for compromise to take place.
Left alone, President Trump, and both the Democrat and Republican leadership could probably come to a deal. While there are differences those are manageable.
Rep. Pelosi and Sen. Schumer would like to see immediate amnesty for the Dreamers, but would settle for a path to citizenship. They are content to leave out the vast majority of illegal aliens in this DACA bill. They are happy to throw money at “border security” as long as specific funding for the border wall isn’t included.
Sen. Mitch McConnell and Rep. Paul Ryan would ideally like an overall more comprehensive immigration bill, but will settle for Dreamers. They can’t agree to immediate amnesty, but are more than willing to work on language about a path to permanent status if not citizenship. Given the fact they don’t want to fund the border wall either, they are more than happy to fund increased undefined “border security” and call that a victory.
The President first and foremost wants this off his desk, with something that can be considered a win. He’s seems fairly flexible, but is quite cognizant that his base will be watching this very closely. If Sen. McConnell and Rep. Ryan give him cover on a bill, and if that bill doesn’t have immediate amnesty, he’ll undoubtably sign it. He has already indicated border wall funding doesn’t have to be in the bill.
But…there are three other stakeholders in this quagmire, and it is those three who will ultimately doom passage.
Progressive socialist Democrats do not want Democratic Party leadership negotiating with the President at all. From their perspective, “no” isn’t good enough, “hell no” might not be either. (Townhall)
Despite reports indicating President Trump’s positions on amnesty and DACA are shifting to the left, many in the progressive movement recoil that any discussions are occurring at all. Campaign Director Justin Krebs at the far-left group MoveOn.org maintains that “nothing Trump has done should change the fact that he’s pursuing a toxic agenda” and that “Democratic leaders should not forget that.” Murshed Zaheed, of CREDO Action, went further claiming that the California and New York representatives were often “out of touch with the zeitgeist of the progressive movement.” Democratic Rep. Gerry Connolly of Virginia cautioned Democrats dealing with Trump. “Let’s not fool ourselves, he is this person we know, and I just think there must be both political and moral limitations with how far we’re willing to cooperate with that.”
But, that’s not their only reason, and it is this reason around which their 2018 campaign theme revolves. (Townhall)
Progressives are furious at Democratic House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer. In the far left’s minds, the two are “normalizing” President Trump as they continue to negotiate immigration with the Republican president.
Think about that for a moment, having learned nothing from Hillary Clinton, the entire Democratic campaign theme is “We’re not him!!”. Which is why they can’t abide leadership allowing the Oval Office to claim victory for any deal, no matter how weak the claim.
The California liberal combined with the various hispanic organizations and hispanic Democrats are adamant that they will not sit still for any half-measures. They don’t want a stand-alone DACA bill at all. Rather, they are insistent having a place at the table, with their demands being given priority. (Politico)
Democratic leaders are facing fresh trouble with their left flank after cutting their latest deal with President Donald Trump to protect Dreamers. Hispanic lawmakers were blindsided by the Wednesday night announcement from House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) that they’d support legislation to help the nearly 700,000 undocumented immigrants in exchange for an unspecified boost in border security. And immigration activists were frustrated to see Democrats claim victory only days after calling for a stand-alone vote on a path to citizenship for Dreamers. The concerns are particularly acute in the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, where some members worry Democratic leaders — despite getting Trump to drop demands for a border wall in the talks — have already given away too much in the nascent negotiations and say their members are being shut out of key talks.
“This is bulls\*t,” said Rep. Filemon Vela (D-Texas). “If what we’re going to do is address DACA, we ought to do that on its own and we ought to address border security on its own.” Some members want to draw up a list of 10 or so border security provisions the caucus won’t accept as part of any bipartisan deal.*
Immigration groups want to see more than just a fix for the nearly 700,000 individuals affected by DACA; they want a path to citizenship for more than 1 million that would be provided under the DREAM Act.
Some of these activist are so energized, they disrupted an event last night where Rep. Nancy Pelosi was speaking (Wash Post)
Protesters angrily confronted House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) on Monday — and she tried in vain to quiet them — about her emerging agreement with President Trump to provide legal protections to young undocumented immigrants. The protesters demanded “a clean bill” — meaning that the Dream Act would get an up-or-down vote on its own without any language regarding border security attached. They “demanded” that Pelosi show a commitment to protecting “all 11 million” undocumented immigrants believed to be in the country. “We are not a bargaining chip!” the protesters chanted, according to local reporters. “All of us or none of us,”
These enraged protestors have evidently turned on Democratic leadership, and consider them to be part of the problem (Wash Post)
“We demand accountability. Democrats are not the resistance of Trump. We are!” they shouted.
Then there are the conservative border security hawks who consider President Trump’s campaign promise to build a border wall and to stridently enforce illegal immigration to be sacrosanct. (Townhall)
For President Trump’s part, his own base is just as angry. Many are claiming the president is betraying his promises. Many Trump voters are worried that border wall, the cornerstone of his campaign, will not happen. “The base will leave him. They can’t support him anymore,” said Rep. Steven King if a wall is not completed.
In particular Rep. Steve King and Ann Coulter was loudly vocal about their displeasure with President Trump negotiating with the Democrats. (Townhall)
“The base will leave him. They can’t support him anymore. I am talking about my constituents in Iowa that will say you need to be behind trump. I am. I support his entire agenda. I support the agenda Trump had when he went into office and I support almost every piece of the agenda, except the amnesty piece being dangled, and that’s so destructive to a first world country,” Rep. Steve King, an early supporter of Trump on the campaign trail, said during an interview with CNN Thursday morning. “If you do not have the rule of law or respect for that law, the people writing the immigration laws are the people breaking them. We had a protest here, DREAMers coming up demanding we give them amnesty. What right do law breakers have to make demands from the citizens of the United States of America. If anything, they should be pleading for it and not demanding.” “This was a straight up promise throughout his campaign,” King continued. “It looks to me like he’s preparing to keep Hillary Clinton’s campaign promise rather than his own.”
“At this point who DOESN”T want Trump impeached?”, and “If we’re not getting a wall, I’d prefer President Pence.”
These border security hawks will be very upset if a DACA deal includes any path to citizenship. They consider that de facto amnesty. They also do not want legislation without funding for a border wall. These conservatives have been burned far too often by “future funding” promises by the Democrats, and are going to insist on border funding first. Also, any discussion about “chain migration” is not on the table. Lastly, they will not ever allow those to morph into a general amnesty bill. That would be a craven Rubio-esque betrayal in their mind.
So, there you have it. The problem for those who would be willing to compromise in order to make a deal happen is they do not have the numbers to get the deal done. Conservatives in the House would revolt if Paul Ryan brought up a general amnesty deal, or agreed to DACA legislation without border security and wall funding.
Likewise on the left, there are far too many liberals who don’t want to see any deal with the White House, who along with the open borders advocates make up a sizable voting bloc opposing Schumer and Pelosi.
It’s hard to see how DACA moves forward, whether its this year, or first quarter 2018. There are too many players with disparate views, and while there might be other obstacles, these alone appear to make Dreamer legislation a pipe dream.