The Emperor’s New Clothes and other immigration news – January 10, 2018

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Remember the old story about the emperor who loved looking good more than anything else? He didn’t care about the prosperity of his people or even the defense of his country, but only about how good he looked. He fell for the promises of a couple of tricksters who promised him new clothes that would be magic as well as beautiful: any courtier unfit for his position would not be able to see their beauty, so anyone who could not see their beauty should lose his position.

Something like that must have been at work yesterday, as Democrats and Republicans sat down with the emperor to negotiate a Dream Act. When they all got up from the table, the emperor’s press secretary announced “a successful bipartisan and bicameral meeting on immigration reform.”

In the story, the courtiers all praised the beauty of the emperor’s clothes. Only a little child pointed and said, “But he has no clothes!”

The issues, some participants claimed, had been narrowed to DACA, the border wall, restricting family-based immigration, and ending the visa lottery.

That’s not narrowing the issues. That’s including the entire Republican wish list.

The emperor proclaimed his desire for a “bill of love” and said that he would sign anything that Congress sends him.

Of course, no agreement was reached. Not even close.

For more on the farce, read any of the stories linked below:

Trump Calls For ‘Bill Of Love’ Allowing DACA Recipients To Remain (NPR, 1/9/18)

“President Trump told a bipartisan group of lawmakers on Tuesday that he wants a bill to allow young immigrants who were brought to the country illegally to remain, saying that such a measure should be “a bipartisan bill of love” and that “we can do it.”

Trump touts ‘bill of love’ for Dreamers and raises sweeping immigration reform (The Guardian, 1/9/18)

“During the closed-door portion of the meeting, lawmakers and the White House agreed to narrow negotiations to four key issues: border security, so-called “chain migration”, the visa diversity lottery and the Dreamers.”

Trump’s bizarre and confusing DACA meeting with Congress, explained (Vox, 1/9/18)

“Trump ended the meeting with a nod to the reporters in the room: “I hope we gave you enough material. This should cover you for about two weeks,” he said.

“The punditry that followed was almost as confusing as the meeting itself. Despite having just witnessed an inconclusive and at times contradictory session of policy negotiations, many in the media were quick to praise Trump for televising the vast majority of the meeting.”

Trump professes desire to protect “dreamers” — but fate of deal remains uncertain (Washington Post, 1/9/18)

“Yet even as Trump sought to instill confidence that a deal could be done — suggesting he would defer to Congress over details and sign any bill that reaches his desk — the president’s vague promises and often conflicting negotiating positions left both sides uncertain about where he ultimately would come down.”

Trump contradicts self repeatedly in immigration meeting (CNN, 1/9/18)

“Sens. Jeff Flake and James Lankford after the meeting both said the meeting was surprisingly helpful and they appreciated the President adding some clarity to the discussions, while noting hammering out the details remains to be worked out….

“Yet even as Trump sought to instill confidence that a deal could be done — suggesting he would defer to Congress over details and sign any bill that reaches his desk — the president’s vague promises and often conflicting negotiating positions left both sides uncertain about where he ultimately would come down.”

TPS, Salvadorans, and a few more facts

I’ve written more about the issue here: U.S. immigration policy: un-protect and deport.

Trump’s attacks on humanitarian immigration just became a full-blown war (Vox, 1/9/18)

“The overwhelming majority of those immigrants have deep roots in the US. And Salvadorans might have the deepest roots of all: Approximately 192,700 US-born children have at least one parent who’s on track to lose legal status due to the administration’s Monday announcement….

“No president wanted to end humanitarian immigration. Then came Donald Trump.

“Temporary Protected Status serves as a form of humanitarian relief, offered to nationals of countries struggling with the aftermath of war, natural disasters, or other humanitarian crises where conditions on the ground make it difficult for people to return safely.”

What You May Not Realize About The End Of TPS Status For Salvadorans (NPR, 1/9/18) 

“On average each immigrant sends back $4,300 a year, says Orozco, for a grand total of more than $600 million annually.

“That’s more than official U.S. aid to El Salvador — and it amounts to about two percent of El Salvador’s GDP. If that doesn’t sound like much, consider that the country’s GDP has only been growing at about two percent a year over the last several years.

“Orozco says this means that, “in practical terms, if you were to stop this money, the economy couldn’t grow.”

US ends protections for Salvadoran immigrants, sparking fear (AP via Star Tribune, 1/8/18)

“Guillermo Mendoza, who came to the United States in 2000 when he was 19 years old, was anguished about what to do with his wife and two children who are U.S. citizens.

“What do I do? Do I leave the country and leave them here? That is a tough decision,” said Mendoza, a safety manager at Shapiro & Duncan, a mechanical contractor company in Rockville, Maryland, near Washington.”

Salvadorans fear their country not prepared for returnees (AP via Star Tribune, 1/9/18) 

“Deportees are often targeted by gangs, because they believe they have money. Police also target them, because of the stigma that they are criminals.

“There’s no work,” Rios said. “Between 200 and 300 Salvadorans continue leaving every day for the United States.”


About Mary Turck

News Day, written by Mary Turck, analyzes, summarizes, links to, and comments on reports from news media around the world, with particular attention to immigration, education, and journalism. Fragments, also written by Mary Turck, has fiction, poetry and some creative non-fiction. Mary Turck edited TC Daily Planet,, from 2007-2014, and edited the award-winning Connection to the Americas and AMERICAS.ORG, in its pre-2008 version. She is also a recovering attorney and the author of many books for young people (and a few for adults), mostly focusing on historical and social issues.
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