Nevada officials are condemning President Trump’s decision to end the program that has allowed undocumented young immigrants to stay in the U.S., including Gov. Brian Sandoval.
He urged Congress to act “to preserve this program and reform and stabilize our nation’s immigrant system.”
“These are individuals who were brought here as children and this is the country they know and love because it’s their home,” he said. “Many are now young adults who wear our nation’s uniform in the armed forces or are teaching in our classrooms.”
Sandoval said he supports DACA and has signed legislation allowing DACA, the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, recipients to become licensed teachers and earn a driver’s license.
“I am hopeful that Nevada’s federal delegation will recognize the urgency of the moment and fight for the thousands of Nevadans who are living happier lives and contribution to our state’s recovery,” Sandoval said.
Rep. Ruben Kihuen, D-Nev., said the decision tramples the nation’s values and shatters the hopes and dreams of 800,000 nationwide.
“I was once undocumented and now I am a member of Congress,” Kihuen said.
He said the administration “has proven time and again their only goal is to foster anti-immigrant and divisive rhetoric.”
State Sen. Yvanna Cancela, D-Las Vegas, said Trump’s decision will impact more than 13,000 in Nevada alone.
Rep. Jacky Rosen, D-Nev., termed the decision cruel, saying she was “utterly appalled.”
She said by inviting those people to come out of the shadows and accept conditions of DACA, the U.S. made them a promise.
“President Trump is now reneging on that promise, exploiting the trust DREAMers placed in their government to protect them from deportation form the only country they have ever known as home.”
She said it’s up to Congress to “write this wrong,” and pass permanent relief for DREAMers.
Assemblywoman Olivia Diaz, D-North Las Vegas, who chairs the legislative Hispanic caucus, said Trump’s “callous decision to end DACA is an insult to Nevada’s Hispanic Community and an affront to a state whose economy is powered by hardworking immigrants.”
She, like Sandoval, called on Congress to stand up and pass a permanent, bipartisan solution to the immigration issue.
Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto, a Democrat and the first Latina elected to the U.S. Senate, said the decision, “clearly show he stands with Stephen Bannon and Joe Arpaio.”
In addition, she said the decision will cost the U.S. economy $433 billion over the next decade.
She called on both parties in the Senate to pass the DREAM Act.
Finally, the American Civil Liberties Union of Nevada described the decision to end DACA as “only the latest act of discrimination to come from the White House.”
ACLU officials pointed out despite the decision, DACA recipients have constitutional rights and, “we will do everything in our power to ensure these members of our communities receive the due process and equality they are guaranteed under the law.”