WASHINGTON – President Trump said Friday that he plans on signing an executive order on immigration that will provide a “road to citizenship” for recipients of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.
Trump told Telemundo’s José Díaz-Balart that he would be signing a “big immigration bill” that would involve the Dreamers, immigrants brought to the United States when they were children.
When pressed on how it would get done, Trump said he would be signing an executive order.
“One of aspects of the bill … is going to be DACA, we are going to have a road to citizenship,” Trump said.
Confusingly, Trump said at one point, “I’m going to make DACA a part of it, but, we put it in and we’re probably going to then be taking it out.”
It’s not yet clear how lasting such an executive order might be, and, when questioned, Trump said, “We’re working out the legal complexities right now, but I’m going to be signing a very major immigration bill as an executive order, which the Supreme Court now, because of the DACA decision, has given me the power to do that.”
Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) tweeted Friday evening, “There is ZERO constitutional authority for a President to create a ‘road to citizenship’ by executive fiat.”
In June, Trump tried to end DACA but the Supreme Court rejected his bid to take away legal protections for hundreds of thousands of immigrants.
White House spokesman Judd Deere clarified Friday that any executive order would not include amnesty.
Deere said in a statement obtained by The Hill:
“As the President announced today, he is working on an executive order to establish a merit-based immigration system to further protect U.S. workers. Furthermore, the President has long said he is willing to work with Congress on a negotiated legislative solution to DACA, one that could include citizenship, along with strong border security and permanent merit-based reforms. This does not include amnesty.”