Members of Congress from Central Texas reacted Tuesday to President Donald Trump’s decision to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, a policy by former President Barack Obama that protects hundreds of thousands of immigrants who were brought illegally to the U.S. as children.
U.S. Rep. Blake Farenthold, R-Corpus Christi, did not respond to a request for comment.
Here’s what they said:
“This policy, while well-intentioned, was implemented without the approval of Congress by a president who exceeded his authority under the Constitution. This president now has the chance to work with Congress towards finding a solution to this issue where his predecessor failed. These children who were brought here illegally through no fault of their own continue to make positive contributions to Texas and the nation, and it’s important for us to achieve a long-term resolution.”
“I’m glad that President Trump is upholding the rule of law. When President Obama decreed executive amnesty, it was in direct contravention of his duty under Article II of the Constitution to ‘Take Care that the Laws be faithfully executed.’ Executive amnesty was contrary to law—which is why [the program Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents] was enjoined by federal court—and the Trump Administration is properly acting to comply with federal law.”
— U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas
“By ending the unconstitutional DACA program [Trump] has overturned the last of the Obama Administration’s amnesty agenda and returned to the rule of law. … Congress and the administration should strengthen our laws against illegal immigration and ensure that our immigration policies put unemployed Americans first.”
“This is an attempt to make Dreamers bargaining chips to achieve other Trump anti-immigrant objectives. Protecting Dreamers must be nonnegotiable. We cannot break our commitment to these Dreamers, who have been vetted, paid fees, undergone criminal background checks, and are either in school or are already graduates, contributing to our economy.”
“The administration’s announcement today restores the rule of law… (I)mmigration changes can only be made by an Act of Congress as enumerated in Article 1, Sections 1 and 8 of the Constitution; not through executive action as the prior administration did. This is the only way to adhere to and respect the separation of powers. Congress is already taking steps to improve our immigration enforcement and border security, and I look forward to continuing to work with this administration.”
“The Supreme Court upheld the unconstitutionality of President Obama’s expansion of DACA last year, and as a retired judge, I agree the creation of legislation is the role of Congress, not the president. As Congress takes up immigration reform, I look forward to working with my colleagues on a legislative solution that benefits our nation and provides for the pursuit of the American dream.”
“I am glad we have an administration that recognizes the importance of the rule of law. Congress needs to do its job and … it is my hope that we pursue legislation that makes our country safer and stronger. We need to do all of this with the goal of inspiring people to legally pursue the American Dream.”
“The decision to rescind this program now brings the important job of fixing our broken and inadequate immigration system into focus for Congress to work out a legislative solution. When it comes to the Dreamers, those children and young adults who are here through no fault of their own, I believe Congress should quickly find a solution to ensure they can stay in the United States, which for many is the only home they know.”