A Trump administration talking points memo urges Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals to “self-deport,” despite the president publicly expressing Congress now has six-months to solve the riddle of immigration before the program is officially phased out.
ABC News reports the tersely worded directive issued to Congressional members also strongly suggests those targeted “prepare for and arrange their departure from the United States.”
“The Department of Homeland Security urges DACA recipients to use the time remaining on their work authorizations to prepare for and arrange their departure from the United States — including proactively seeking travel documentation — or to apply for other immigration benefits for which they may be eligible,” the document reads.
U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions publicly delivered the administration’s stance on the program Tuesday morning in a press conference-styled announcement where he took no questions.
ABC also reported a senior level official confirmed that the “DACA Rescission” entitled document was official and that the Trump administration stands by the point as written.
“Once DACA expires, they are in this country illegally,” the source added. “And once that expires, we expect them to no longer remain in our country illegally.”
Critics have been quick to pounce on the fact that since the rescission announcement was made White House officials have insisted so-called DREAMers are “not a targeted priority” of immigration officials.
During her regularly held press conference on Tuesday, White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders deliberately dodged the never-ending question of if those now protected by the policy would face deportation after the 180-day phase-out period has elapsed.
“We’d like to have confidence that Congress will actually do their job,” she said. “We’re going to ask that they do that and that they allow us to work with them and be part of that process.”
Complicating the situation even more is a tweet sent out by President Trump late Tuesday where he vowed to “revisit this issue” if Congress does not come up with a solution over the next six months.
“Congress now has 6 months to legalize DACA (something the Obama Administration was unable to do). If they can’t, I will revisit this issue!” he wrote.
As many as 800,000 people stand to be effected by DACA being phased out, with as many as 300,000 potentially eligible to lose their legal status as early as next year.
In the wake of the White House’s announcement, former President Barack Obama was among those quick to condemn the administration’s actions.
“Let’s be clear: The action taken today isn’t required legally,” Obama said in a statement. “It’s a political decision, and a moral question. Whatever concerns or complaints Americans may have about immigration in general, we shouldn’t threaten the future of this group of young people who are here through no fault of their own, who pose no threat, who are not taking away anything from the rest of us.”
[Featured Image by David McNew/Getty Images]