While speaking to reporters on Wednesday, President Trump said he is open to a pathway to citizenship for undocumented young people brought to the U.S. as children, putting him at odds with some of the most conservative members of the Republican Party.
“We’re going to morph into it,” he said. “It’s going to happen, at some point in the future, over a period of 10 to 12 years. Somebody does a great job. They worked hard. It gives incentive to do a great job. They’ve done terrifically. Whether they have a little company or whether they work or whatever they’re doing — if they do a great job, I think it’s a nice thing to have incentive of, after a period of years being able to become a citizen.” Last year, Trump said he was ending the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, which protected undocumented young people from deportation, and gave Congress until March 5 to come up with a legislative solution.
Trump told reporters he thinks a deal will be reached, and DACA recipients “should not be concerned” about being deported. He also reiterated that he wants $25 billion to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border and $5 billion for additional security measures. “I can tell you this — if you don’t have a wall you don’t have DACA,” he said.