According to Axios, the president and administration officials have been inspired by a June op-ed written by John Yoo, a Korean-American attorney and former government official under George W. Bush, who exposed a legal loophole that could give the president the upper hand.
The US attorney argues that Barack Obama violated the US Constitution by issuing "extralegal visa programmes" under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA). Regardless of this, the Supreme Court ruled to uphold Obama's orders which have opened the door to future American administrations to impose policies without congressional approval even if they violate laws, according to the lawyer.
'Trump's Immigration Policy Appears Inconsistent'
Meanwhile, Donald Trump's recent remarks on DACA which allows certain undocumented young people who came to the US as children to stay in the the country and become eligible for a work permit have prompted quite a bit of confusion.
In his latest interview with Chris Wallace on "Fox News Sunday" Trump pledged to replace DACA with "something much better" very soon. Speaking to Spanish-language television Telemundo earlier this month the president said that he would sign a new "immigration bill" but then suddenly called it "an executive order".
"It is true that he has made a muddle of his once-tough platform on illegal immigration. This is curious since it was the defining issue of his first campaign", opines Dan Cadman, a fellow at the Centre for Immigration Studies and a retired INS/ICE official.
The president's approach to the issue appears inconsistent. The president's vow to grant DACA recipients a way to remain in the US permanently voiced during his Telemundo interview coincided with his administration's announcement that it was going to rewrite the justification to rescind the programme altogether, the retired ICE official notes.
To complicate matters even further, the president has yet failed to select Homeland Security secretaries who actually support his agenda, opines the retired ICE official. He refers to former acting secretary Elaine Duke who recently publicly admitted to having undermined the original DACA termination order by editing out much of the rationale. "The admission was a shocking example of malfeasance in office", Cadman remarks.
A 'Bill' or an 'Executive Order'?
Though the president dropped the hint that he was about to sign a new "immigration bill", the US Congress has not yet passed any legislation to sign, the Associated Press notes, adding that American lawmakers have "zero appetite" to "wade into the divisive issue with four months to go before the election and in the middle of a pandemic".
For its part, Business Insider presumed that Trump's earlier remarks of instrumentalising an "executive order" to pursue his immigration policies apparently confirms the version outlined by Axios on 19 July.
"We're working out the legal complexities right now, but I'm going to be signing a very major immigration bill as an executive order, which [the] Supreme Court now, because of the DACA decision, has given me the power to do that", Trump told Telemundo on 10 July.
On 17 June 2020, the Supreme Court blocked the president's effort to revoke DACA saying that the Trump administration didn't follow the appropriate procedure. The president did not give up tweeting: "We will be submitting enhanced papers shortly in order to properly fulfill the Supreme Court's ruling". However, the White House has not taken any steps in this direction so far, according to the media.
A month later, a federal court ruled that the Trump administration should start accepting new applications under DACA citing the US Supreme Court's decision. No new applications have been accepted since the president's move to shred the programme in 2017, with about 66,000 people now being eligible to obtain conditional permanent residence (CPR) in the US if DACA is resumed.