Biden to meet with 11 Democratic lawmakers on DACA: report

President Biden arrives to an event marking the 31st anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act in the Rose Garden of the White House on Monday, July 26, 2021
UPI Photo

President Biden is expected to meet with 11 congressional Democrats on Thursday to discuss plans for a pathway to citizenship for undocumented immigrants who arrived in the country as children, Axios reported, citing a White House official.

Axios reported that the lawmakers include Sens. Dick Durbin (Ill.), Bob Menendez (N.J.), Catherine Cortez Masto (Nev.), Alex Padilla (Calif.) and Ben Ray Luján (N.M.). 

They will be joined by Reps. Jerry Nadler (N.Y.), Zoe Lofgren (Calif.), Raul Ruiz (Calif.), Pete Aguilar (Calif.), Lucille Roybal-Allard (Calif.) and Linda Sanchez (Calif.)

The meeting follows a ruling by a federal judge in Texas earlier this month that said that the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, a 2012 Obama-era program created through executive order in order to shield undocumented immigrants from deportation, could no longer accept new applications.

Judge Andrew Hanen, citing DACA recipients’ increased reliance on the program, said that those currently enrolled could continue receiving their benefits and apply to renew them, pending a future order from himself, the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals or the Supreme Court.

Following the ruling, Biden called the decision in a statement “deeply disappointing” and said that the Department of Justice intended to appeal it.

The ruling has only increased pressure on Congress to come up with a more permanent solution to provide undocumented immigrants who arrived in the country as children, otherwise known as Dreamers, with a pathway to citizenship.

“I have repeatedly called on Congress to pass the American Dream and Promise Act, and I now renew that call with the greatest urgency. It is my fervent hope that through reconciliation or other means, Congress will finally provide security to all Dreamers, who have lived too long in fear,” Biden said.

Senate Democrats are considering pushing for immigration provisions through reconciliation, which would bypass a GOP filibuster if all 50 Democrats signed on. 

“We are going to do everything we can to provide a path to citizenship for the Dreamers and many others, and you know why we’re going to do it? We love America and immigrants are great for America,” Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) said last week. 

The Hill has reached out to the White House for comment.

Tags Alex Padilla Ben Ray Lujan Bob Menendez Catherine Cortez Masto Charles Schumer Chuck Schumer Chuck Schumer DACA Dick Durbin Jerry Nadler Joe Biden Joe Biden Linda Sanchez Lucille Roybal-Allard Pete Aguilar Raul Ruiz Reconciliation Zoe Lofgren
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