Trump’s Speech: What he Didn’t Say

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By Joe Guzzardi

Joe is a CAPS Senior Writing Fellow whose commentaries about California's social issues have run in newspapers throughout California and the country for nearly 30 years. Contact Joe at joeguzzardi@capsweb.org, or find him on Twitter @joeguzzardi19.

The writer's views are his own.

March 1, 2017
The reaction to President Trump’s speech delivered to a joint session of Congress fell along party lines – no surprise. But even among the president’s most fervent supporters, those who eagerly voted for him, disappointment is growing and intensifying over his failure to keep an important campaign promise.
 
President Trump addresses Congress Feb 28 2017
Trump’s rousing speech left out DACA; supporters want
American job displacement program ended.
 
Candidate Trump pledged to end deferred action for childhood arrivals (DACA) immediately upon assuming office. Trump repeatedly called President Obama’s 2012 program “an unconstitutional executive amnesty.” Yet, even though his speech to Congress would have been the perfect forum to announce DACA’s end, Trump made no mention of it. To the outrage of Trump’s base, DACA moves on, and has since the president’s inauguration allowed thousands of new applicants and renewals to enter the labor market, and become employed.
 
President Trump could terminate DACA within a matter of minutes simply by sending a memo to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services ordering it to end the program. Obama started DACA without congressional approval, and Trump can end it the same way.
 
Someone has bamboozled the president about DACA. President Trump can’t refer to them without noting that they’re exceptional or heaping other platitudes on them. Sure, in any group of 750,000 individuals – the estimated DACA recipients’ total number – a few will stand out, maybe even be valedictorians.
 
But as I wrote in an earlier blog post, DACAs didn’t have face-to-face interviews, and USCIS instructed them to include only Social Security numbers that the Social Security Administration officially issued. If they had stolen Social Security numbers and listed them on their applications, that would be felony identity theft.
 
The latest DACA update is discouraging. After recently meeting with President Trump, Gov. Terry McAuliffe (D-VA) told reporters that the president would “absolutely not” end DACA. Some otherwise in President Trump’s corner have called him out on his DACA failure, and referred to him as a deceitful double-crosser.
 
President Trump hasn’t ruled out eventually ending DACA. But given how simple, cost efficient and immediate voiding the program is compared to, for example, building a wall or deporting millions of criminal aliens, one wonders. If President Trump wants to have his cake and eat it too, he could end DACA, but come to a special understanding with the 750,000 that they won’t be deported. But the work permits must be rescinded.
 
In his speech, President Trump promised to improve the job market for American workers. But his ongoing DACA extension casts doubts for many about Trump’s commitment to Americans.
 

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