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OPINION: DACA Repeal, Best for Who?

Clementine Larrouilh, Reporter

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Many voters thought they were dreaming when Donald Trump ran for president, and many wished they could wake up when he won. But now coming into his ninth month as president, it’s clear to see that Americans have gotten used to the terror of the American president. For most of the population, the rest of the night will be smooth sailing, but for the Dreamers, the nightmare still continues.

When Trump ran for office he was considering repealing Obamacare which was terrifying enough. But now that that plan has fallen into disarray for now, he’s turned his attention to a plan far more sinister: a repeal of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA.

The DACA’s main goal is to protect undocumented immigrants who entered the US as minors from deportation. It currently protects nearly 800,000 people. The DACA was created by former president Barack Obama in the form of an executive order, and just like every executive order that President Obama ordered, President Trump is focusing on repealing it. However, this is not a new idea for him.

The first time a repeal of the DACA was mentioned by the Trump administration was in February by the Los Angeles Times. They state, “Senior Trump aides are holding fast to their goal of strengthening immigration enforcement,…They have examined at least two options that would not directly involve Trump, according to two immigration policy advisors to the White House.”

This means that even in February, Trump was examining a way to end the DACA without having the backlash fall on him. However, the means to do that were not clear then, but now nearly eight months later, they’ve managed a way to repeal the DACA. The only problem is that Trump doesn’t have a plan ready for what comes after the repeal.

The effect of a repeal of the DACA, without another plan behind it, could be disastrous for an entire generation. There are two questions that the Trump administration needs to answer before the repeal. Will the repeal be a “sunset” action, meaning that it would cut off at the end of their current two-year protection? Or would it be an action that cuts off all the protections at once?

Without an explanation, the six month delay wouldn’t be a relief, but rather a period of stress for Dreamers, who currently have no idea what their future is going to look like.

The justification for this repeal is laughable. According to President Trump he was driven by a concern for, “The millions of Americans victimized by this unfair system.” Attorney General Jeff Sessions legitimizes his decision because, “The program has denied jobs to hundreds of thousands of Americans by allowing those same illegal aliens to take those jobs.”

If Jeff Sessions really wanted to protect Americans he would think twice before advocating a repeal of the DACA.  A report from the Center for American Progress finds that, “Ending DACA would place severe economic strain on businesses around the country, putting them into the impossible and extremely costly position of having to fire productive employees for no other reason than an arbitrary change in federal policy, potentially resulting in backlash from other employees, or their broader community.”

An article by Fortune further explains that, “An average of 30,000 workers could lose their jobs every month if DACA were repealed or permit renewals were held up. It’s also estimated that the loss of those workers could cost the country $460.3 billion in economic output over the next decade, with Medicare and Social Security contributions dropping by $24.6 billion.”

For the president to propose this without fully realising the consequences that it would have not only for the Dreamers, but also on the American people and the American economy, is irresponsible and shows a lack of maturity on his part. He wants to fulfill his his promise to his supporters, but to do this hastily, and alarming thousands of people on the way, is not the way to go. He can’t just repeal the DACA without having an adequate replacement. We saw how well that worked with Trump-care, with the many problems including that of pre-existing conditions. It caused a backlash so immense that it fell through, and President Trump failed to deliver. So for President Trump to do this now is problematic seeing that if this fails, he’ll have disappointed his followers a second time, and he would have threatened the stability of Dreamers’ lives.

It is very clear at this instant that the Trump Administration does not have a clear plan about the DACA moving forward. The problems that this causes are numerous and can only be fixed when a stable plan is introduced. However, coming up with a solution for this could take months, time which Congress doesn’t have. What it would take for a plan to be produced that is effective in its goal would be a bipartisan effort, which, sadly, does not seem possible in the near future. So while the rest of America slumbers in its delusions, the Dreamers’ monster in their nightmare is catching up to them, with no rescue in sight.

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