Leaders of some of the country’s biggest companies signed a letter Saturday urging President Trump not to make a new attempt at revoking the Obama-era DACA deportation amnesty, saying it would be a significant disruption to lose those employees during the coronavirus recovery.
The companies, which range from Apple and Amazon to Target and General Motors, said the illegal immigrant “Dreamers” who are able to work due to the DACA program “have been critical members of our workforce, industries and communities for years now.”
“This is no time to disrupt the economic recovery of our companies and communities, nor time to jeopardize the health and safety of these vulnerable individuals,” wrote the leaders, who call themselves the Coalition for the American Dream. “We ask that you leave DACA in place and refrain from taking any additional administrative actions that would negatively impact the DACA program.”
As of March, more than 640,000 Dreamers were protected by the DACA program, which prevents deportation and grants work permits and some taxpayer benefits.
The Trump administration in 2017 announced a phaseout of the program, but that was put on hold by the courts, and last month the Supreme Court ruled the phaseout illegal, saying the administration cut too many corners.
But the court said the administration does have the power to end DACA, as long as it does it properly.
On Friday, Mr. Trump and the White House sent mixed signals about what’s in store.
“I’m going to do a big executive order, I have the power to do it as president,” Mr. Trump told Telemundo.
He continued: “One of the aspects of the bill is going to be DACA. We’re going to have a road to citizenship.”
Mr. Trump in the interview repeatedly confused bills with executive orders.
The White House, moving to try to sort through the president’s remarks, said later that Mr. Trump’s executive order will deal with imposing merit-based conditions on legal immigration.
The White House said Mr. Trump wants to work with Congress on DACA — suggesting it won’t, actually, be part of the executive order.
Mr. Trump in the past had complained about DACA-like programs, calling them executive “amnesty.”