A top White House official on Tuesday morning refrained from demanding that any legislative fix for the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program be tied to funding for a wall on the U.S. border with Mexico.
During a breakfast with reporters held by the Christian Science Monitor, Marc Short, the White House’s director of legislative affairs, was asked if President Donald Trump will demand that Congress tie legislative restoration of DACA’s policies to funding for a border wall.
“We are most interested in getting border security. And the President has made a commitment to the American people that he wants—he believes that a physical barrier is important to that equation of border security,” Short replied. “Whether or not that is part of a DACA equation, or whether or not that’s another legislative vehicle, I don’t want us to bind ourselves into a construct that makes reaching a conclusion on DACA impossible.”
Later, asked again if Trump would demand that legislation restoring DACA’s protections be paired with funding for a wall, Short said that Trump is not backing off his demand that the country build a physical barrier at the southern border.
“Whether or not that is specifically part of a DACA package, or in a different legislative package, I’m not going to prejudge here today,” Short added.
Short would not say whether Trump is willing to sign legislation that provides a path to citizenship for DACA recipients, undocumented immigrants who were brought to the U.S. as minors.
“I’m not going to state on that,” Short said when asked if Trump would be open to a path to citizenship. He said that the White House would wait to see Congress’ proposals.