DACA, immigration reform focus of bipartisan meeting

A meeting is scheduled between U.S. House Appropriations Committee members and the Homeland Security Subcommittee to talk DACA and immigration reform — this as the clock continues to tick on a replacement program to protect more than 700,000 undocumented people from deportation.

U.S. Rep. Henry Cuellar, D-Laredo, will represent the Rio Grande Valley region as one of the few Democrats from the House to attend the bipartisan meeting Tuesday, which is designed to further talks in a replacement program for the now-rescinded Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program — or DACA — that protected several thousands from deportations.

Among the list of issues delaying an agreement on a DACA replacement is GOP insistence, promulgated by the Trump Administration, that a physical border wall along the U.S.-Mexico border must be funded. Democrats have been critical of as much, referring to such a deal for the undocumented youth — often referred to as Dreamers — as a means of using a replacement program as leverage for border wall funding.

In a prepared statement, Cuellar announced his scheduled attendance at the bipartisan meeting.

“Today, I will meet with President Trump and members of Congress in a bipartisan meeting to discuss immigration issues regarding the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals Program (DACA) and the Dreamers,” Cuellar said in Tuesday’s statement. “Now, more than ever, it is necessary that we work together in both chambers to help Dreamers remain active members of our communities.”