Politifact is wrong: A vote for the Dec. 22 spending bill was a vote to deport Dreamers
On Jan. 2, Politifact reached out to CREDO about this tweet, asking for “information backing CREDO’s claim that Democrats voted to deport Dreamers?”
We quickly responded with a 563 word email that thoroughly made our case, quoted a letter signed by more than 130 organizations making the exact same claim and provided extensive citations. Today, Politifact published an item rating our tweet false, quoting just 40 words from our response that did not include the crux of our argument or any of the citations we provided.
The full response we provided to Politifact on Jan. 3 can be found below.
When Donald Trump ended the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, Democratic leaders promised they would use their power to restore the program by passing the DREAM Act as part of the year-end spending package. Since the spending bill needed 60 votes in the Senate, Democrats had the power to demand protection for Dreamers from deportation in exchange for their votes. Democrats failed to make good on their promise and failed to use the leverage they had to stop Dreamers from being deported when they voted for continuing resolutions (CR) without any protections for Dreamers on Dec. 8 and again on Dec. 22.
Before Congress voted on the CR on Dec. 22, CREDO, United We Dream and more than 130 progressive allies and immigrant rights groups sent a letter to Democratic leadership warning that if they broke their commitment to protect DACA recipients before the end of the year, we would hold them accountable. In that letter, we also made clear that “votes on any spending bill that moves forward without a clean DREAM Act are votes to deport Dreamers and rip communities apart.”
In addition to the Dec. 14 letter, countless key players on this issue made clear that a vote for a year-end CR without the DREAM Act would be a vote to deport Dreamers. A few examples include:
Cristina Jimenez, Executive Director and Co-Founder, United We Dream: “A vote for the year-end spending bill without the DREAM Act is a vote to deport immigrant youth like my little brother.”
Frank Sharry, Executive Director, America’s Voice: “If the DREAM Act is not included and with DACA now ended, a vote to fund deportation agencies in 2018 would be a vote to deport Dreamers.”
Marielena Hincapie, Executive Director, National Immigration Law Center: “A vote to delay the DREAM Act is a vote to deport Dreamers.”
Indivisible: “There’s no two ways about it: voting for this CR without the DREAM Act attached was a vote to deport Dreamers.”
MoveOn.org: “Voting yes last night on the spending bill without a clean DREAM Act is a vote to deport Dreamers.”
People’s protections under DACA are expiring every single day that passes without congressional action, putting them at risk for deportation. More than 14,000 immigrant young people have already lost their work permits and protection from deportation. Each day that Congress waits to pass the DREAM Act, 122 more lose their DACA status and become vulnerable to Trump’s ever-growing deportation machine. Before Trump ended the program, immigration agents were already targeting and arresting DACA recipients for deportation, including Daniel Ramirez Medina, Riccy Enriquez Perdomo and Daniela Vargas. Without a permanent legislative solution, DACA recipients are not safe from deportation.
While the Dec. 22 CR did not include language authorizing the deportation of DACA recipients, it is important to recognize that legislation has real-world consequences beyond what is explicitly written into law. In this case, Democrats’ failure to use their leverage in the year-end spending bill to force passage of the DREAM Act will have the real world consequence of allowing some individuals previously protected under DACA to become subject to deportation. Given that, we believe it is more than reasonable to assert that any Democrat who voted for December’s CR without any protections for DACA recipients voted to help Trump deport immigrant young people whose DACA status will expire in the coming weeks.