Trump set for ‘major’ border announcement amid reports of concessions on immigrant ‘Dreamers’
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President Donald Trump said he will make a “major” announcement on Saturday about the border and ongoing government shutdown, amid reports that the White House could offer a major concession on its immigration hardline to end the standoff with Congress.
The president did not provide any further details on what he would discuss on what is set to be the 28th day of the partial government shutdown. The White House press team offered no further guidance to reporters when asked about the president’s tweet late Friday.
However, both The Washington Post and The Wall Street Journal reported on Saturday that the president is expected to offer protections from deportations for millions of immigrants who were brought to the U.S. illegally, in exchange for the nearly $6 billion he is seeking for a border wall.
Citing unnamed White House officials, the publications say the concessions on so-called “Dreamers” is seen as an olive branch to Democrats, and a potential way to end the nearly month-long stalemate that’s shuttered the government.
Axios reported that Trump is prepared to throw his support behind the BRIDGE Act, which would provide three years of temporary legal status and work authorization for the Dreamers. The act was first proposed in 2016 by Senator Lindsey Graham, a Republican close to Trump, and Democratic Senator Dick Durbin.
Temporary Protected Status (TPS) is given to nationals from designated countries affected by armed conflict, natural disaster, or other strife. TPS holders are permitted to work and live in the United States for limited times.
The shutdown is the result of Congress’s inability to pass a short-term funding bill for the government that Trump would be willing to sign.
The president has insisted that such a bill contain more than $5 billion in funding to build a border wall. Democrats have refused to agree with that demand.
Trump cited the shutdown when he canceled his trip to the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland next week. He also called off sending his delegation to the meeting, “out of consideration” of the 800,000 workers not receiving pay because of the shutdown. Press secretary Sarah Sanders said in a statement that Trump wanted his team to be available to “assist as needed.”
Earlier Thursday, the president postponed House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s planned overseas trip with other members of Congress to visit U.S. troops in Afghanistan, shortly before they were scheduled to depart on a military plane. Trump said the trip would be rescheduled when the shutdown ends.
That postponement came a day after the California Democrat sent Trump a letter, urging him to either reschedule his upcoming State of the Union address to a joint session of Congress or deliver it in writing because of the shutdown.
–Reuters contributed to this article.