Daily Breeze: South Bay political leaders condemn decision to dump DACA
The Trump administration’s decision Tuesday to punt the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program to Congress prompted strong criticism from South Bay elected officials to the immigration policy change that could affect tens of thousands of Californians.
Here’s a sample of the reaction from prominent local Democrats:
• Rep. Nanette Barragan, D-San Pedro: “I’m fired up and I’m angry about the decision the president made today on DACA. What about the promise the government made to these young people? They said, if you come forward and come out of the shadows, we’re going to protect your information. What about that promise?
“I want every dreamer to know that I stand with them, that I’m going to fight like hell here in Congress to make sure that we protect them, to make sure we honor the promise that we made.
“These people are doctors, are teachers, are neighbors; in my case, my cousin. I call on Congress and my colleagues across the aisle who have been speaking up on this issue in support of DACA protections to do more than speak, and to act, and to act now, and to act fast.”
• Rep. Ted Lieu, D-Manhattan Beach: “As an immigrant to the United States — brought here when I was three years old — I know that our nation’s embrace of immigrants is what makes it great. Trump’s cowardly decision to end DACA goes against the very forces that have made America an exceptional country.
“Deporting hundreds of thousands of Asians and Latinos — nearly half of whom were brought to the U.S. before the age of 7— is not only cruel, it will hurt our economy. One report estimates an economic loss of $460 billion over the next decade.
“I stand firmly with my Democratic colleagues to fight this action and do whatever we can to protect DREAMers. I call on Speaker Ryan to work with Democrats to extend the DACA program through legislation.”
• South Bay county Supervisor Janice Hahn: “When I was in Congress, I helped local young people register for DACA. I saw them get into college. I saw them get their dream jobs. For the first time they dared to plan for bright futures and believe that the American dream applied to them.
“AG Jeff Sessions claimed the decision to kill DACA was the American thing to do. I don’t buy that and neither should you. Being American means recognizing others’ success is part of the tide that lifts all boats and is not a threat to your own livelihood.”
• Los Angeles Councilman Joe Buscaino: “While the Trump administration attempts to pass the buck on this decision to Congress, we all know based on the evidence of the past eight months that it is unlikely Congress or the president will have the moral courage, negotiating skills or willpower to pass the DREAM Act within this arbitrary six-month deadline.
“In the meantime, over 223,000 hard-working DACA recipients in California and hundreds of thousands more nationwide will face the undue burden of fear and uncertainty as Congress and the president play politics with their lives, families, and jobs.
“Over 72% of Americans support allowing DACA recipients to stay in the United States, which further highlights the harsh and cruel nature of this morning’s decision to choose politics over American values and the lives of thousands of youth.”