Gov. Jay Inslee and 85 Democratic members of the state Legislature sent a letter today to President Trump, urging him not to take further action to repeal the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrival (DACA) program following last month's Supreme Court ruling. Washington is home to more than 16,000 young people covered by DACA.
The governor invited all members of the state Legislature to sign the letter in support of DACA. Fifty-seven Democratic members of the state House of Representatives and 28 Democratic members of the state Senate signed the letter, including Speaker Laurie Jinkins and Majority Leader Andy Billig.
The letter reads, in part:
"We are heartened by the Supreme Court’s June 18 decision ensuring that DACA recipients can continue to live their lives free from the fear and uncertainty they have shouldered since your decision to terminate the program in 2017. Particularly at a time when immigrant communities are facing disproportionate health and economic impacts from the COVID-19 pandemic, this new measure of security is sorely needed.
"However, in their ruling, the Court remanded the issue back to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and left open the possibility that your administration may continue to pursue termination of the DACA program. If you were to proceed down that path, we are confident that you would cause staggering costs to our economy and substantial injury to employers across our state. More importantly, it would carry a devastating human toll for the thousands of DACA recipients we represent. These young people know no other place as their home and would be torn apart from their lives, their families, their jobs, and their communities. We hope you recognize that these costs are far too great to pursue further action on this issue.
"We strongly encourage you to abandon any efforts to terminate a program that directly benefits thousands of Washingtonians who we are proud to serve. Instead, it is our fervent hope that you choose the path of empathy and reason by ensuring that these young people remain here at home, in America, where they belong."
Read the full letter here.