Debate continues to rage over President Donald Trump’s decision to scrap the Obama-era Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) effort, a measure that allows children of illegal immigrants to defer deportation and gain work status.
But amid the noise, at least one evangelical who is on Trump’s unofficial faith advisory committee sees a glimmer of hope in the president’s decision to rescind DACA, arguing that the six-month delay in the revocation of the policy shows that Trump is taking evangelicals’ advice and having some compassion on the children of illegal immigrants.
The Rev. Tony Suarez, the vice-president of the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference and a faith leader who is on the president’s evangelical board, doesn’t agree with Trump’s DACA stance, but he told the Huffington Post that there’s still a “sense of vindication” surrounding why he and others should remain on the council.
“Our voice was heard,” Suarez said, arguing that he and other evangelicals were heard when they argued for the protection of young “Dreamers,” the term used to describe the young people covered under DACA. “We worked tirelessly with the administration to make sure there are provisions in place so that the children can still be protected.”
Rather than an immediate revocation of DACA — which Suarez said was discussed — Trump opted for a six month grace period and, in the meantime, is urging Congress to act by coming up with a plan of its own; some people under the current program will also reportedly hold protections from being deported until October 2019, The New York Times reported.
Suarez believes that the six-month buffer and the two-year delay for those currently enrolled were collectively a “direct outcome” of evangelicals’ influence on Trump.
Critics have long argued that Obama shouldn’t have created the DACA program via executive order and that any and all immigration amendments should come from the legislature.
You can read my full statement regarding today's DACA decision here. #DACA REV SAMUEL RODRIGUEZ REACTS TO DACA DECISION: Hispanic Christians to Launch National 60-Day Campaign in Support of DREAMers, Will Put “Unrelenting Pressure” on Members of Congress Until “Every DREAMer can Dream Again” “We do not intend on letting a single member of Congress have a good night’s rest until they guarantee our young people can rest easy.” Rev. Samuel Rodriguez SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Today, in light of the White House’s decision on DACA, the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference and its affiliate churches and organizations, announces a national campaign intent on putting “unrelenting pressure” on “every” member of Congress until a permanent, legislative solution is provided for “DREAMers.” “Hundreds-of-thousands of Hispanic young people will be overcome with fear and grief today. Simultaneously, a multi-ethnic coalition of tens-of-millions of law abiding, U.S. citizens will begin to put unrelenting pressure on members of Congress to provide a permanent solution for DREAMers, whose fate is in question by no fault of their own,” s aid Rev. Samuel Rodriguez, President of the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference. “ For far too long in this country, Hispanic young people have been the political bargaining chips of our powerful politicians. This is an affront to the sanctity of life, it is inhumane, and the Hispanic community will stand for it no longer. Our elected members of Congress have time and again, professed concern for the Hispanic community and yet, have chosen to do nothing. We will not distinguish between Republicans and Democrats but between those who stand for righteousness and justice and those who do not.” Among other actions, the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference will be temporarily relocating additional staff to Washington, D.C., launching a national media campaign, rallying tens-of-thousands of the nation’s spiritual leaders, coordinating weekly meetings on Capitol Hill and in State Capitols. Additionally, the NHCLC will be organizing a “fly-in” of hundreds of prominent Hispanic leaders from throughout North America for
“I have a love for these people, and hopefully now Congress will be able to help them and do it properly,” Trump said after the announcement.
The Rev. Samuel Rodriguez, president of the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference, released a statement after Trump’s announcement that his organization will launch a 60-day campaign in support of Dreamers — an effort that will put “unrelenting pressure” on Congress to act on a permanent solution.
“For far too long in this country, Hispanic young people have been the political bargaining chips of our powerful politicians,” Rodriguez said. “This is an affront to the sanctity of life, it is inhumane, and the Hispanic community will stand for it no longer.”