The battle lines have been drawn and the realities of what concessions need to be made are writ clear. To get any kind of amnesty for the estimated 700,000 DACA recipients presently living in the United States, the Democrats (and some Republicans) will have to help the president make good on his electoral promises.
The president’s key campaign pledges included building an effective wall along the southern U.S. border and an end to what is known as chain migration. These and the more recent issue with the “Visa Lottery” are the defining lines in what is set to be either his grandest legacy or his resounding defeat.
In a Tweet yesterday morning, President Trump stated that:
“The Democrats have been told, and fully understand, that there can be no DACA without the desperately needed WALL at the Southern Border and an END to the horrible Chain Migration & ridiculous Lottery System of Immigration etc. We must protect our Country at all cost!”
Yet this was not merely the president letting the American people know what his personal price is, it was also a way of letting the public know that the Democrats are well aware of his price, effectively putting the ball in their court.
The three areas that President Trump mentions are the wall, chain migration, and immigration lottery. All of these have been widely debated, but what will it mean for the average American?
The president seeks funding to build (and rebuild) an effective wall along the U.S. Mexico border with the aim of stopping illegal migrants just wandering into the country. The blunt reality of this is that people trafficker, drug traffickers and other criminal enterprises will be shut down. It would not only reduce the amount of illegal migration but in one swoop cut modern slave-trading to almost zero.
Chain migration is an issue that has been widely ignored because it is a legal form of migration, however, it is estimated that more than 70% of U.S. migration occurs through this method. While we can all applaud the idea of reuniting families, the harsh reality is that over 9 million people have entered the country using this law. And these are rarely skilled workers bringing economic benefits. The truth is that chain migration is responsible for making low, or unskilled worker wages plummet; with an overabundance of unskilled labor, the minimum wage has become the maximum wage.
The “Diversity Visa Lottery” system is an outdated and highly contentious system that has come to light in recent weeks with the news that the Sayfullo Saipov (the man charged with eight deaths in the Manhattan terror attack) had entered the country through this method. How much more “diversity” is needed in the United States?
President Trump may have already won this game before the other players are even aware that it has started. He has openly supported the idea of doing “something” for DACA recipients but has put the onus on the Democrats to meet his demands.
If they refuse, he has 700,000 young migrants to wave in their faces and call them out as hypocrites who would rather play politics than protect the lives of these “amazing young people.” Should they decide to barter, Trump can accuse them of trying to make political capital at the expense of “children’s futures.” And if they give in, Trump can claim that he not only has saved the DACA “kids,” but has fulfilled even more of his promises to Make America Great Again.
There is a theory doing the rounds that “President Trump is playing 4D chess while everyone else is playing checkers;” the checkers players might just be about to realize they’re playing the wrong game.