Fox News reported Thursday afternoon that the Trump administration will end Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals:
DACA grants undocumented immigrants protection from deportation if their parents brought them illegally to this country as children. They must have a high school diploma or GED, and they must pass a background check. As of this year, DACA protected about 750,000 young people from deportation—something Trump pledged to change during his campaign for president.
Though the White House hasn’t issued a formal policy, McClatchy reports that the administration will most likely allow DACA beneficiaries to stay in the U.S. until their current work permits expire. Trump will say this is a compassionate compromise. It is not. It will split up families and uproot individuals who have spent most of their lives in this country.
The decision will also inflict economic harm, CNBC reports:
The research follows a study earlier this year by the Center for American Progress that estimated the loss of DACA workers would reduce U.S. gross domestic product by $433 billion over the next 10 years.
That economic impact would be felt unevenly across the country. California, with an estimated 188,000 DACA workers, would suffer a GDP loss of $11.3 billion a year, according to the CAP research. Texas would lose $6.1 billion in GDP annually, and North Carolina would lose $1.9 billion a year.
None of this matters to Trump, who must appease the bigots who form the hard core of his support. Ten conservative states are suing the federal government over DACA, which they say is unconstitutional. The move may actually be less popular with the larger Republican base; according to polling from Morning Consult, most Republican voters think DACA beneficiaries should be allowed to become citizens.
Nevertheless, most of them voted for Trump knowing full well about his xenophobia. Trump is betting they won’t care much, and he’s probably right.