President Donald Trump’s recent announcement that he would phase out the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals [DACA] program and let Congress come up with a solution has been met with mixed reactions from local LGBT Republicans.
Vincent Foster, president of the Miami Log Cabin Republicans, said he blames the parents but, “as the son of an immigrant from Jamaica, who came here legally,” still thinks individuals brought here illegally should be deported. “You should be deported, simple as that.” As for Congress coming up with another program, he doesn’t think it will happen within the six-month deadline set by Trump. “Congress is too inefficient to get anything done on the issue.”
Former Republican Congressman Mark Foley, who now resides in Palm Beach County, said Trump has “forced Congress’ hand on DACA” when it comes to “lingering problem of undocumented children and young adults who came to America” because of their parents.
“Allowing the executive order to remain in place without permanent law which only Congress can pass placed further confusion in an already chaotic system. The President said he wanted to help the dreamers and I pray he and Congress can resolve this humanitarian issue.” Foley said that he supports “allowing the dreamers remain in the country and add to the Social Security and tax system as they arrived here through no fault of their own.”
He added that the Democrats should have done something about the problem in 2009 when they controlled Congress and the White House. “But they didn’t want to risk losing the majority. So, time and time again, our agenda has been bypassed for political expediency.”
Valyn Calhoun, who lives in Fort Lauderdale and hosts Red Menace Radio, an online radio show whose purpose he describes as “exposing social marxism and battling the hypocrisy of the left,” favors the president’s action on DACA. “Honestly, as someone who voted for Trump and campaigned for him, I kind of wish he would go a little further.”
Calhoun said emotion needs to be stripped from the issue and the true cost needs to be evaluated.
“I’m looking at it as more from a fiscal standpoint.” Costs that he said can’t always be fully accounted because they’re “purposefully obfuscated, right and left.”
A study by The heritage Foundation, a conservative think tank, found that the estimated 3.7 million illegal immigrant households cost a net financial burden of $54.5 billion per year. A study by The Center for American Progress, a liberal think tank, found that allowing “Dreamers” to stay would add $329 billion to the U.S. economy by 2030.
Calhoun also wants to send Dreamers back because he said their presence encourages “chain immigration” – more immigrants who follow family members and friends who come to the United States. Like the costs of immigration, various think tanks and organizations either say “chain immigration” is a myth or not a huge problem, or they promote it as true.
Andy Eddy, spokesman for the Broward County Log Cabin Republicans, said he believes people brought here by their parents as children, who are not criminals and are employed, should be given a pathway to legalization. As for Trump’s actions, he said he wants to wait and see what the outcome is.
“I don’t think he’s going to deport these people. I find it hard to believe, unless they’re criminals.”