President Donald Trump‘s reported decision to end DACA — the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals policy that offers work permits to people who entered the country illegally as minors — has incensed the internet, with politicians, everyday Americans and people who have benefitted from the program expressing shock and disgust over the move expected to be officially announced Tuesday.
Sen. Bernie Sanders forcefully condemned the news on Twitter Sunday night, saying that if Trump indeed ends the program “it will be one of the ugliest and cruelest decisions ever made by a president in our modern history.”
“Taking legal protections away from 800,000 young people raised in this country is absolutely counter to what we stand for as a nation,” the Vermont senator and former Democratic presidential candidate also tweeted.
On Sunday night, Politico broke the news that Trump had decided to end the program, but would delay the enforcement for six months to give Congress a window to act. Lawmakers on both sides of the aisle have expressed concerns about ending the program.
In the meantime, social media was flooded with messages expressing revulsion that he would end the program.
Hillary Clinton tweeted that there was “no time to waste” in battling Trump’s reported decision.
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo and New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman tweeted Monday that they would sue the president if he rescinds DACA.
Connecticut Sen. Chris Murphy called on Republicans to join Democrats in passing legislative protection for “Dreamers,” the nearly 800,000 undocumented people who were brought to the United States as young children and have been temporarily excluded from deportation under the DACA program.
“Dear Republicans, your moment has come. Every Democrat will join you,” Murphy tweeted. “Show the courage and grace to save these children, and our nation.”
President Obama, who used executive actions to launch DACA in June 2012, is also expected to speak out if Trump officially decides to end the program, Politico reported Monday, citing a person close to Obama.
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi has called on House Speaker Paul Ryan to defend the DACA program.
Ryan was among several Republican leaders to denounce the reported move, and on Friday also urged Congress to save DACA.
“I actually don’t think [Trump] should do that and I believe that this is something Congress has to fix,” Ryan told his hometown radio station WCLO in Janesville, Wisconsin.
Republican Rep. Mike Coffman of Colorado said Thursday that he’ll attempt to force a vote on a House bill that would uphold DACA protections.
“#DACA participants grew up here, went to school here, and should be allowed to stay here. The time has come to take action,” Coffman tweeted.
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Republican Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen of Florida slammed the president over his reported decision and also called on Congress to step up to protect Dreamers.
“If reports of ending #DACA within 6 months are true, #Congress must work immediately to pass law protecting #Dreamers who only know the US,” she tweeted in both English and Spanish.
“After teasing #Dreamers for months with talk of his ‘great heart,’ @POTUS slams door on them,” she added in another tweet. “Some ‘heart’…”