The Justice Department said Tuesday it will ask the Supreme Court to overturn a federal judge’s ruling that prevents President Trump from ending the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, which currently offers protections from deportation for about 700,000 people who came to the U.S. as children.
But the administration has not asked courts to put the ruling by U.S. District Judge William Alsup on hold while the Supreme Court considers what to do. The effect will be to allow the DACA program to continue while the litigation proceeds.
“Until further notice … the DACA policy will be operated on the terms in place before it was rescinded” by Trump, a spokesperson for U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services said Tuesday. “We are still accepting applications.”
A leading Republican senator on immigration urged President Trump to abandon his harsh and profane statements about Africa and some other countries and return to an attempt to get a bipartisan deal to protect young immigrants and boost border security.
Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), who confronted Trump at a White House meeting last Thursday after the president apparently complained of immigrants from “shithole countries,” said Trump may have gotten bad advice from his staff before the meeting.
“This has turned into an s- show and we need to get back to being a great country,” Graham said Tuesday during a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing.
The head of the Homeland Security Department denied that President Trump referred to some countries as “shitholes” during a White House meeting about immigration — though she didn’t dispute that Trump used vulgar language.
“The conversation was very impassioned,” secretary Kirstjen Nielsen testified Tuesday before the Senate Judiciary Committee. “I don’t dispute that the president was using tough language. Others in the room were also using tough language.”
“I did not hear that word used, no sir,” Nielsen said, responding to a question from Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.). She didn’t specify what Trump did say. Nielsen is the only Cabinet member who was in the room.
The Trump administration on Tuesday released a report attempting to link terrorism with migration, arguing that it was evidence of the need to dramatically reshape the nation’s immigration system.
The report, ordered by President Trump in an executive order last year, said that 75% of the 549 people convicted of terrorism charges since 9/11 were born outside the U.S. Administration officials called that a sign that the U.S. needs to scrap its policy of family preferences for visas, which they call “chain migration,” and a diversity visa lottery program.
But the report did not specify how many — if any — of the convicted terrorists entered the country through those means. It also did not detail how many of the convictions were related to attacks or plans in the U.S. versus overseas and how many involved people who went to fight overseas for the Islamic State or another terror group. Those details were not available, officials said.
Nearly a week after horrific mudslides hit California’s Central Coast and killed at least 20 people, President Trump sent his condolences to those affected in his first public statement on the disaster.
“The President has been briefed and will continue to monitor the mudslides in California. The President and First Lady extend their deepest sympathies to the families affected, their appreciation for the first responders saving lives, and their prayers for those who remain missing.”
Sen. Richard J. Durbin is standing by his claim that President Trump questioned why the country has to accept immigrants from “shithole” African countries, after two Republican colleagues belatedly refuted the Illinois Democrat.
“I know what happened. I stand behind every word that I said in terms of that meeting,” Durbin said on Monday about the president’s remarks at a White House meeting last week on immigration.
Durbin also dismissed reports attributed to unnamed White House aides that Trump said “shithouse” rather than “shithole.” He told reporters in Illinois, “I am stunned that this is their defense.”
A Republican senator is insisting that President Trump did not use a vulgar term in referring to African countries during a closed-door meeting on immigration that he and six other lawmakers attended last week.
Sen. David Perdue of Georgia called reports describing Trump as using vile language in the meeting a “gross misrepresentation” and said Sen. Richard J. Durbin (D-Ill.) Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) were mistaken in indicating that was the case.
Perdue said Sunday on ABC's “This Week”: “I am telling you that he did not use that word. And I'm telling you it's a gross misrepresentation.”
President Trump is disputing a quote attributed to him during a newspaper interview about relations with North Korea's leader.
The Wall Street Journal on Thursday quoted Trump as saying: “I probably have a very good relationship with Kim Jong Un.”
Trump tweeted Sunday: “The Wall Street Journal stated falsely that I said to them ‘I have a good relationship with Kim Jong Un’ (of N. Korea). Obviously I didn't say that. I said ‘I'd have a good relationship with Kim Jong Un,' a big difference. Fortunately we now record conversations with reporters and they knew exactly what I said and meant. They just wanted a story. FAKE NEWS!”
The furor over President Trump’s language about immigrants from “shithole countries” has partially obscured the substance of what he was demanding and the profound shift among Republicans beyond opposing illegal immigration to also pushing new limits on legal migrants, particularly those of color.
Trump made the remark as he rejected a bipartisan proposal from Sens. Richard J. Durbin (D-Ill.) and Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) to resolve the status of some 700,000 so-called Dreamers facing deportation. In exchange for protecting them, Trump wanted more restrictions on legal migrants from Africa, the Caribbean and Latin America, among other changes.
Those demands come as Trump has already put the country on track to remove 1 million immigrants over the next two years. Among them are the Dreamers — young immigrants who came to the U.S. illegally as children — and more than 200,000 Salvadorans, nearly 60,000 Haitians and others from Central America who have lived in the U.S. legally, in some cases for decades, under temporary protected status plans that the administration is ending.