Durbin: Trump Created The DACA Crisis Six Months Ago Today. What Happens Next Is Up To Republican Congressional Leaders

WASHINGTON—Six months to the day after the Trump Administration terminated the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program and called on Congress to solve the crisis, U.S. Senate Democratic Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL) again called on the Republicans who control Congress to pass the bipartisan Dream Act.  

“What’s at stake? 780,000 young people protected by DACA, which officially by President Trump’s order ends today,” said Durbin. “They have one ray of hope, perhaps two. Two courts have said we’re going to suspend the abolition of DACA until we hear the arguments of the President’s authority and the Constitution. So there is a temporary—and I underline temporary—injunction in place while these cases are pending. But I can tell you as a member of the Senate and as a lawyer, no one can predict how long that protection will last. Is it a matter of days or weeks or months? At best. And that’s what these young people live with, this uncertainty. This humanitarian crisis in this country—and I call it that—was created by President Trump on September 5th. He has failed to agree to six different bipartisan proposals to solve the problem he created, and now these lives hang in the balance. What will happen next? Do we have to stand by and watch as these families are divided? As talented young people are deported?

Video of Durbin’s remarks on the Senate floor are available here.

Audio of Durbin’s remarks on the Senate floor is available here. 

As of today, tens of thousands of DACA recipients have lost their work permits and are at risk of deportation.

In July of last year, Durbin and Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) introduced the bipartisan Dream Act, which would allow immigrant students who grew up in the United States to earn lawful permanent residence and eventually American citizenship. These young people, known as Dreamers, have lived in America since they were children, built their lives here, and are American in every way except for their immigration status.