'Don't Deport Immigrant Youth': Dreamers Rally Outside White House Ahead of Trump's DACA Deadline
"Trump thought we would go back into the shadows but he was wrong. We are still here and we are #HereToFight!"
One day ahead of the deadline set by President Donald Trump for Congress to pass a bill to address the group of undocumented young immigrants known as Dreamers, rights advocates rallied outside the White House on Sunday to demand action from the president and oppose his administration's deportation agenda.
Trump alarmed undocumented immigrants and advocacy groups in September when his administration announced plans to end Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), and put pressure on members of Congress by setting a March 5th deadline. While two federal judges have recently ruled that the administration must continue to process DACA renewal applications, lawmakers have failed to pass a legislative fix for DACA over the past six months.
The ACLU, which organized the Sunday rally with United We Dream, denounced the president for "throwing over 800,000 lives into chaos" with last year's DACA decision. The group also pointed out that Trump had promised he would take action to protect Dreamers from deportation if Congress failed to act, tweeting on Sept. 5, the same day as his administration's announcement, "If they can't, I will revisit this issue!"
Debates have stalled in Congress, despite promises from both parties that they would pass a bill, in part because Republican lawmakers and the president have insisted that DACA legislation must include increased enforcement measures and funding for Trump's proposed wall along the U.S.-Mexico border.
Participants in Sunday's rally had a few key messages for Trump, including: "Don't deport immigrant youth!" and "Fix what you broke!" They shared photos and videos from the demonstration with the hashtag #HereToFight.
The White House rally preceded a related event, the March for Dreams, which will take place on the National Mall on March 5.