Tillis to introduce bill to create path to legal status for DACA children

WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — As the Trump administration appears ready to phase out an Obama-era program that has protected hundreds of thousands of young immigrants brought into the country illegally as children, a North Carolina senator says he will introduce a plan that could help some of those undocumented immigrants earn legal status.

The Trump administration is expected to announce plans to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. Sen. Thom Tillis (R-North Carolina) says he will introduce legislation this week to create a path for some of the people who had been protected by DACA.

“I’ll be introducing legislation that will provide a fair and rigorous path for undocumented children to earn legal status by requiring them to be employed, pursue higher education, or serve in our armed forces,” Tillis said in a statement this morning. “I know this kind of commonsense legislative fix can and should unite members of Congress, and I’ll be working closely with my colleagues on the path forward. It’s up to my Democratic colleagues to decide whether they want a permanent solution or to make this a political wedge issue. I hope they’ll choose bipartisanship.”

This morning, President Donald Trump tweeted a quick message about DACA and the work Congress will need to do on it.

“Immigration policy must be set through legislation, not executive orders. That was the fundamental flaw underpinning DACA and the reason it’s highly unlikely to survive a legal challenge,” Tillis said in his statement. “President Trump is wisely giving Congress a period of time to fulfill its responsibility to legislate and take long-term action to address the uncertainty facing undocumented children, who were brought to America through no fault of their own.”

Attorney General Jeff Sessions is expected to announce Tuesday the government will end DACA in six months.

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