Contrary to What Trump Would Have You Believe, the Facts Matter

As Trump was preparing to sign the omnibus spending bill, he took to Twitter a couple of times with statements like this:

Over and over again the president has attempted to blame Democrats for the fact that a fix for DACA hasn’t been passed. What he seems afraid to acknowledge is that, if he hadn’t sent his attorney general out to end the program protecting young undocumented immigrants on September 5, 2017, there would be no need for a fix. His administration has subsequently used the Dreamers as hostages in an attempt to make xenophobic changes to our current immigration system.

Contrary to what Trump suggests, Democrats have been willing to negotiate a solution. That is why it is important to document all of the times they have proposed a compromise, only to be rejected by the White House. It happened on four different occasions.

September 13: Trump has dinner with Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer and House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi at the White House, after which the two Democrats say they agreed in broad strokes to a DACA-border security deal that doesn’t include Trump’s wall. Trump initially seems on the same page, then the White House and Republicans walk it back.

January 11: After months of meetings, Democrat Dick Durbin and Republican Lindsey Graham go to the White House to propose to Trump a compromise worked out by their group of six bipartisan senators. The offer includes a path to citizenship for eligible young immigrants, the first year of Trump’s border wall funding, ending the diversity visa lottery and reallocating those visas, and restricting the ability of former DACA recipients to sponsor family.

Trump and the White House invite hardline Republicans to the meeting and he rejects the deal, making his now-infamous “shithole countries” comment in the process.

January 19: House before a government funding deadline, Schumer and Trump meet for lunch at the White House. Schumer offered Trump the upwards of $20 billion he wanted for his border wall in exchange for a pathway to citizenship for the eligible immigrant population. The deal is rejected, and government shuts down at midnight.

February 14: A bipartisan group of senators unveils a compromise plan, which includes $25 billion for the border, a pathway to citizenship for the immigrants, cuts to one slim category of family-based migration and prevents the parents who brought their children to the US illegally from ever being sponsored for citizenship by those children. White House goes all out to stop the bipartisan compromise deal, which fails to get the necessary 60 votes in the Senate, with 54 votes

When it comes to who is to blame for all of this, Trump and his supporters in the right-wing media want us to believe that facts don’t matter anymore, which leaves them free to spin their lies. But it is critical that we fight back against that kind of normalization of propaganda, if for no other reason than to maintain the historical record and our sanity.

Nancy LeTourneau

Nancy LeTourneau is a contributing writer for the Washington Monthly.