How Will A Biden Administration Tackle Immigration After Four Years Of Trump?

TOPSHOT – People rally in Little Tokyo to oppose a Trump administration plan to use Fort Sill Army base in Oklahoma as a detention center for immigrant children and other Customs Enforcement detainees outside the Japanese American National Museum, in Los Angeles, California on June 9, 2019. – Fort Sill was one of the sites used for the imprisonment of more than 100,000 people of Japanese decent living mostly on the West Coast during World War II. Fort Sill was also used to hold Native American prisoners of war, including Apache warrior Geronimo who died in custody there. (Photo by DAVID MCNEW / AFP) (Photo by DAVID MCNEW/AFP via Getty Images)

President-elect Joe Biden has promised to put the coronavirus health crisis and economic recovery at the forefront of his agenda once in office. But his administration is also expected to address immigration — and to use executive orders to reverse many of outgoing President Donald Trump’s most controversial immigration policies.

The Biden administration has plans to restore the Obama-era Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, known as DACA, and discontinue the use of Pentagon funds to build a wall at the southern border.

But will he go beyond rolling back the Trump administration’s policies, and commit to bringing about comprehensive immigration reform legislation, as he’s promised to do? And would Congress support this kind of immigration agenda?

“Joe Biden has to keep his promise if he wants to avoid being in the shadow of Barack Obama — of being called deporter-in-chief. I believe he will keep that promise,” said Paola Ramos, a journalist and author who is the former deputy director of Hispanic media for the 2016 Hillary Clinton campaign and a host for Vice News.

“It’s not only the politically right thing to do, or the moral right thing to do,” she said. “I think not doing anything can really cause Democrats a lot of harm in the long term.”

In a recent interview for Take Two’s immigration special, “The Invisible Wall,” host A Martinez spoke with Ramos and with Mike Madrid, a Sacramento-based Republican strategist and co-founder of the Lincoln Project, about what they think the political landscape looks like for immigration moving forward.

Here’s what they had to say. (Responses have been lightly edited for clarity.)

Given that the Biden-Harris team will need to put the pandemic and the economy at the forefront, what’s the argument for addressing immigration in the first 100 days? Why would it be important to do something? Or is it?

By MARINA PEÑA for LAIST.COM
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