Why Are Republicans Suddenly So Desperate to Save DACA?

It seems that barely a week goes by without congressional Republicans doing some foolish thing that makes us wonder: Just why in the hell did we bother voting last November? President Donald Trump is one thing – he’s clearly doing everything in his (limited) power to enact the agenda he promised us on the campaign trail. He hasn’t been a perfect president, but for someone with zero political experience and breathtakingly revolutionary ideas for what this country needs, he’s done a pretty damn good job.

On Congress, we cannot say the same.

After blundering the Obamacare repeal, finding every opportunity possible to come on TV and issue backhanded insults to the White House, and backing slowly (but surely) away from comprehensive tax reform – yes, just wait – they are now suddenly, energetically interested in saving President Obama’s DACA plan?

They DO know they won, right? They DO understand that the president this nation voted for is astoundingly anti-illegal immigration, right? So what is all this? Do they WANT their base to revolt…again? They aren’t still following the terrible advice of that infamous 2012 “autopsy” report, are they? Are they stubborn? Stupid? Or is this just the proof that Washington, D.C. really is the Uniparty that the most hardened skeptics believe it is?

House Speaker Paul Ryan, Arizona Sen. Jeff Flake, Washington Rep. Cathy McMorris-Rodgers – these are just a handful of the many Republican leaders who have come out with semi-hysterical statements insisting that this government MUST step in and save DREAMers from the fate of…of…

…of what?

The fate of deportation, in accordance with the laws Congress has passed?

Look, few Americans want to see these young immigrants rounded out of their jobs and deported back to some country south of the hemisphere, and President Trump has already made it clear that they are not going to be prioritized by Immigration and Customs Enforcement. But ultimately, this comes down to the basic question Trump asked again and again on the campaign trail: Are we going to have a country or aren’t we? If so, we need to enforce our borders and our laws. And that includes slapping down any president who tries to change those laws from the Oval Office. It wasn’t constitutional then and it hasn’t magically become constitutional with time.

If Republicans find some way to save DACA legislatively, fine. But we’ll just say it would be a hell of a thing for that to be the only major congressional achievement of 2017. They didn’t manage to build the wall, but they managed to save Obama’s illegal immigrants.

Yeah, that’ll make for some mighty fine campaign slogans next year.

 


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