- The Washington Times - Tuesday, July 14, 2020

President Trump vowed Tuesday that upcoming actions on immigration will be “taking care of people from DACA,” as he insisted he wants to solve the issue.

He also said he’ll soon sign a “very powerful immigration act” aimed at changing the standards governing some legal immigration, giving more priority to merit-based categories.

He said he has the power to take action based on a recent Supreme Court ruling that rejected his first attempt to phase out the Obama-era DACA program, but also invited him to try again.

“We’ll be taking care of people from DACA in a very Republican way,” Mr. Trump said. “We will be doing for DACA what the Democrats had a chance to do and they never did it.”

It’s not clear what that means.

After the high court’s DACA ruling last month Mr. Trump had initially instructed Homeland Security to try another phaseout. But last week, in an interview with Telemundo, the president said he would soon sign a “bill” granting DACA recipients a pathway to citizenship.

No such bill is likely to reach his desk, and it appears Mr. Trump was talking about an executive order — though experts say he cannot grant citizenship rights through executive order.

Mr. Trump did little to clear up the confusion on Tuesday.

Speaking in the White House Rose Garden, Mr. Trump spent an extraordinary amount of time dissecting the immigration plan of his Democratic opponent, Joseph R. Biden. The president said there’s never been a larger contrast between two candidates, portraying his own policy as law and order, and Mr. Biden’s plans as open borders, sanctuary cities and welfare for illegal immigrants already here.

• Stephen Dinan can be reached at sdinan@washingtontimes.com.

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