Trump Weighs Path to Citizenship Path for Some Young Immigrants

Dana Milbank: What on Earth does President Trump want?

After blowing up a deal to avoid the shutdown and releasing a racist campaign ad accusing Democrats of murder for supporting immigration reform, Trump holed up in the White House for the weekend, posing for pictures with his empty desk.

"We're going to morph into it".

"It's gonna happen at some point in the future, over a period of 10-12 years", Trump said.

Trump promised that Mexico would pay for the wall, but it has repeatedly said it will not do so, and the funding for the project has instead fallen to USA taxpayers.

USA lawmakers had struggled for months to negotiate a compromise over the status of the dreamers, an impasse that shut down the government from Saturday to Monday.

The three-day government shutdown shined a fresh light not only on the dysfunction of Washington, but also on the President's vacillating views. Trump and Graham have not spoken directly, a White House official said. "It's up to the Democrats, but they should not be anxious".

Trump, who is expected to unveil a new legislative framework on immigration on Monday, said a fix for the DREAMers must occur before Congress takes on comprehensive immigration legislation, which he called "the bigger immigration problem".

In announcing the upcoming release, White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders told reporters Wednesday, "This framework will fulfill the four agreed upon pillars" of a deal.

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Earlier Wednesday, White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said the new White House immigration plans will "represents a compromise that members of both parties can support".

The plan will propose border security measures, closing loopholes, ending so-called chain migration, canceling the visa lottery program and legalizing the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA, program, she added. "Last Thursday, I voted to keep our government open and this (Monday) afternoon voted to end the Schumer shutdown".

After the meeting, Democratic Senator Claire McCaskill expressed cautious optimism to reporters about Trump's framework, saying "that could go either way", when asked if it will be helpful to lawmakers.

Trump's impromptu comments signalled a major breakthrough, said Republican Senator Lindsey Graham, one of the lead lawmakers in the immigration negotiations. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) informed the White House on Sunday that he was rescinding the wall funding offer he made last Friday, according to a Politico report on Wednesday.

Rolling out the immigration framework on Monday will allow President Donald Trump to discuss it during his first State of the Union address next Tuesday night.

Whether to include a pathway to citizenship - as opposed to stopping at legal residency - for DACA recipients has been a key sticking point between hardline conservatives and moderate Republicans and Democrats, on the other. The ad implied that Democrats will be "complicit" in any murders committed by undocumented immigrants.

In a speech to colleagues, Democrat Schumer said it was "our moral obligation" to protect dreamers, and that the Senate was in the spotlight over crafting a deal by February 8. They say if the work dries up for illegal immigrants-due to them being deported and their employers being charged for hiring illegal aliens-fewer people will cross the border.

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