Sept. 1 (UPI) — House Speaker Paul Ryan urged President Donald Trump to hold off on a decision to end a controversial immigration policy for young undocumented immigrants, saying it’s something “Congress has to fix.”
Ryan’s comments on a Friday radio show come as business leaders and immigration rights advocates lobbied the Trump administration Friday to continue the Obama-era policy of deferring deportation for undocumented immigrants brought to the United States as children.
The push comes ahead of a self-imposed Tuesday deadline by a group of 10 states threatening to sue the federal government if the program is not ended.
Multiple media reports citing unnamed sources suggested a decision by President Donald Trump on the issue could come as soon as Friday.
If Trump opted to end DACA, the decision would fulfill a campaign promise. However, during his inaugural address, Trump softened his rhetoric regarding undocumented immigrants referred to as “dreamers.” Many of those covered by DACA have no recollection or ties to their native country after growing up in the United States. During his inaugural address, Trump promised the government would treat childhood immigrants with “great heart.”
While media reports citing anonymous sources within the administration said an announcement was imminent on the fate of DACA, White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said no such decision had been made.
“A final decision on that front has not been made, and when it is, we will certainly inform everybody in this room,” she told reporters during Thursday’s briefing.
A group of immigration rights advocates have been holding a round-the-clock vigil in front of the White House for more than two weeks, urging Trump to allow an estimated 800,000 young immigrants covered by DACA to remain in the country.
A group of more than 100 CEOs and other business leaders also released an open letter calling on Trump and Congress to pass legislation that would grant young undocumented immigrants a path to citizenship, noting the economic benefits they provide.
“Unless we act now to preserve the DACA program, all 780,000 hardworking young people will lose their ability to work legally in this country, and every one of them will be at immediate risk of deportation. Our economy would lose $460.3 billion from the national GDP and $24.6 billion in Social Security and Medicare tax contributions,” the letter states.
It was signed by some of the nation’s most prominent CEOs from across the business landscape, including Mark Zuckerberg of Facebook, Satya Nadella of Microsoft, Reed Hastings of Netflix, Mary Barra of General Motors, Alfred F. Kelly Jr. of Visa and Meg Whittman of Hewlitt Packard.