President Donald Trump said for the first time Wednesday that he is open to a path to citizenship for some younger undocumented immigrants known as “dreamers” in an immigration deal being negotiated by Congress, a potential breakthrough in the stalled talks.
In an impromptu discussion with reporters, Trump emphasized that his support of a citizenship path for about 690,000 immigrants would be contingent on security $25 billion for a wall on the southwest border with Mexico and another $5 billion for additional border security upgrades. The president also is expected to continue his push to curb legal immigration as part of a deal.
White House aides said the president would release a complete “framework” on Monday. Trump said that plan likely would grant provisional legal status to those immigrants covered by an Obama-era deferred action program that he terminated last fall. That group would then be eligible to pursue full citizenship over a period of 10 to 12 years.
“We’re going to morph into it,” Trump said of citizenship. “It’s going to happen–over a period of 10 to 12 years. If somebody’s done a great job and worked hard. It keeps the incentive to do a great job. … I think it’s a nice thing have incentive, after a period of years, being able to become a citizen.”
(c) 2018, The Washington Post · David Nakamura