Washington DC [USA], July 11 (ANI): US President Donald Trump on Friday (local time) said that he is planning to sign an executive order on immigration within the next month that will introduce new measures to protect "Dreamers" -- people who were brought to the United States as children by undocumented parents.
In an interview with anchor Jose Diaz-Balart of Telemundo, a North American Spanish language news, Trump said, "You have breaking news. I am gonna do a big executive order -- I have the power to do it as president. I am going to make Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) a part of it."He said that the Supreme Court's DACA decision has granted him "tremendous powers" that would allow him to sign an executive order granting DACA recipients "a road to citizenship".
"If you look at the Supreme Court ruling (on DACA), they gave the president tremendous powers...based on the powers that they gave. I am going to be doing an immigration bill. One of the aspects of the bill...will be DACA. We will give them a road to citizenship," he said.
Trump blamed Democrats from walking away from a deal on DACA and said the Supreme Court's decision last month blocking his administration's plan to end the Obama-era programme gave him "tremendous power".
The White House attempted to clarify Trump's remarks a short time after the interview aired, saying any immigration deal would not include amnesty.
"As the President announced today, he is working on an executive order to establish a merit-based immigration system to further protect US workers," Deputy Press Secretary Judd Deere said in a statement cited by The Hill.
"Furthermore, the President has long said that 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," it said.
However, it is unclear whether the president can unilaterally grant a category of undocumented immigrants -- DACA beneficiaries -- permanent legal status with a road to citizenship.
When former President Barack Obama created the programme through a Department of Homeland Security memorandum in 2012, he was criticised for executive overreach, although DACA only provides temporary deferral from deportation and a work permit to certain undocumented immigrants who meet a set of conditions.
After Trump rescinded that memo in 2017, he gave Congress six months to pass a statutory replacement for DACA, sparking a flurry of legislative activity that ultimately ended in a deadlock, as the White House nixed a nascent bipartisan agreement.
That legislation was replaced by a Republican-led bill, which included provisions unacceptable to Democrats, such as severe reductions of family-based immigration and the diversity visa programme.
Negotiations fully broke down after Trump's rescission was blocked by the courts, starting a two-year process that ended in June's Supreme Court ruling. (ANI)