President Donald Trump declared Thursday morning that there is not yet a deal in place to create a pathway to citizenship for so-called “Dreamers,” disputing multiple media reports that such an agreement had been struck between the White House and Democratic leaders in Congress.
“No deal was made last night on DACA. Massive border security would have to be agreed to in exchange for consent. Would be subject to vote,” the president wrote on Twitter.
But shortly after declaring that no agreement was in place replace DACA, the Obama-era program that his administration announced last week would be rescinded in six months, with legislation, Trump offered his own argument in favor of such a deal.
“Does anybody really want to throw out good, educated and accomplished young people who have jobs, some serving in the military? Really!” the president wrote on Twitter, breaking his message up into two posts. “They have been in our country for many years through no fault of their own – brought in by parents at young age. Plus BIG border security.”
The deal that had reportedly been struck included a pathway to citizenship for undocumented immigrants who were brought to the U.S. as children in exchange for beefed up border security but would not have included funding for the president’s long-promised wall along the U.S.-Mexico border. Trump’s wall has thus far failed to gain any legislative traction, thanks at least in part to strong opposition from Democrats, but the president insisted Thursday morning that the project is already underway.
“The WALL, which is already under construction in the form of new renovation of old and existing fences and walls, will continue to be built,” he wrote.
White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders confirmed Wednesday night that Trump had discussed both DACA and border security with his dinner partners, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.). The president, who has mocked and derided both lawmakers regularly throughout his political career, has warmed to them of late, going around Republican leadership on Capitol Hill to cut a short-term deal with Schumer and Pelosi to fund the government and raise the debt ceiling.
Neither House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) nor Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) were at Wednesday’s White House dinner, although Sanders noted at her Wednesday briefing that the GOP would be well represented because with Trump’s presence, “you’ve got the leader of the Republican Party sitting at the table.”