WASHINGTON: President Donald Trump Saturday offered temporary protection for people illegally brought to the United States as children and other groups of immigrants facing deportation, in exchange for funding for his controversial border wall.
But Trump’s proposal to end the 29-day partial shutdown of the US government, which was sparked by a dispute over funding for the wall, appeared dead on arrival, with the top Democrat in Congress rejecting the proposal based on reports of its contents prior to the speech.
Trump’s proposal calls for US$5.7 billion for border wall funding, US$800 million in “urgent humanitarian assistance” and US$805 million for drug detection technology and port security.
In a nod to Democratic priorities, he offered three years of protection for 700,000 so-called “Dreamers” who were brought to the country illegally when they were children, as well as for 300,000 other immigrants whose protected status is expiring.
But prior to the speech, Speaker of the House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi dismissed Trump’s proposals as “a compilation of several previously rejected initiatives, each of which is unacceptable and in total, do not represent a good faith effort to restore certainty to people’s lives.”
“It is unlikely that any one of these provisions alone would pass the House, and taken together, they are a non-starter,” Pelosi said in a statement.