Nothing would be more likely to trigger a panic attack and “prove” that Trump’s come unmoored than a provocative story about a big immigration sellout driven by the “Democrats” in the West Wing being in the works. Two wrinkles, though. One: McClatchy claims a half-dozen sources for its scoop. Are there even a half-dozen Bannon loyalists left in the White House? Two: If you believe the previous reporting by BuzzFeed, Bannon himself was open to a DREAM amnesty. Quote: “Bannon views DACA, which tends to be viewed more favorably than many immigration policies, as a strategic asset in the coming immigration policy battles.” It’s a bargaining chip, aimed at conceding citizenship for illegals who are already more or less fully assimilated into American culture in exchange for security improvements to keep the unassimilated out.
Which is exactly what the current plan is, per McClatchy:
The White House officials want Trump to strike an ambitious deal with Congress that offers Dreamers protection in exchange for legislation that pays for a border wall and more detention facilities, curbs legal immigration and implements E-verify, an online system that allows businesses to check immigration status, according to a half-dozen people familiar with situation, most involved with the negotiations.
The group includes former and current White House chiefs of staff, Reince Priebus and John Kelly, the president’s daughter, Ivanka Trump, and her husband, Jared Kushner, who both serve as presidential advisers, they said. Others who have not been as vocal publicly about their stance but are thought to agree include Vice President Mike Pence, who as a congressman worked on a failed immigration deal that called for citizenship, National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster and Gary Cohn, a Democrat who serves as director of the National Economic Council.
The conventional wisdom is that Republicans in Congress won’t go for this, especially with a dicey midterm approaching, since populists in the base will freak out.