SCHUYLER, Neb. – The mayor of Schuyler did not mince words when he gave his reaction to the Trump administration’s decision to end DACA.
“I only see negative, there’s nothing positive that will become of this,” says mayor David Reinecke.
President Trump announced through his Attorney General Jeff Sessions that the administration would rescind DACA, or Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, but first would give congress six months to pass a law.
“To have a lawful system of immigration, that serves the national interest, we cannot admit everybody that wants to come here,’ says Sessions.
If congress does not act in due time, some 3,000-plus Nebraska ‘Dreamers’, who came to the United States as kids, could be deported.
“Obviously two-thirds of our population, in one way or another, are going to be negatively impacted by this decision,” says Reinecke.
Schuyler city councilman Antonio Rodriguez is also not a fan of the decision by Trump and and says it will affect the hundreds of DACA recipients in town. Rodriguez, who has a niece and nephew in the DACA program, feels like he was lied to by Trump.
“At first he said he was going to treat this issue with heart because we have some very incredible kids here. But now that he did this, everybody thinks he’s a liar,” says Rodriguez.
Rodriguez prays his family members will not be sent back to El Salvador because they have already been in the United States for a long time.
“This is all they know, this culture, this system, this country, they were brought here when they were five, when they were seven, when they were two,” says Rodriguez.
When asked about the possibility of jobs opening up in Schuyler, if DACA is rescinded, Mayor Reinecke says that many companies are already having enough problems filling those jobs and the dissolution of DACA would only be bad for Schuyler.
In fact, the mayor asked Gov. Pete Ricketts, who participated in the Schuyler parade on Monday, on how he felt about the DACA law.
“He says, ‘I support the laws’ and I asked him if something maybe needs to change and I just asked him, when you’re walking the parade route to take a look at the people that are watching the parade, because these are going to be some of the people that are going to be affected by this,” says Reinecke.
Despite the setback, the two Schuyler city officials are hopeful that the legislative branch will pass some immigration reform that allows the ‘Dreamers’ to stay in the US and Schuyler.
“We know this is not the end,” says Rodriguez.
“We got to get congress to make DACA legal, do it the right way, make it law and get enough support to make sure the president can’t veto it,” says Reinecke.