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Schumer, Pelosi say Trump's immigration demands 'can't be serious'

  • Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi slam President Donald Trump's terms for a deal to protect Dreamers.
  • The Democratic leaders had said they reached the outline of a deal with Trump on legislation to shield the young immigrants from deportation.
  • Trump ended the Obama-era DACA program last month with a six-month delay.

So much for President Donald Trump's honeymoon with Democrats.

On Sunday night, Democratic congressional leaders slammed the president's terms for a deal to protect hundreds of thousands of young people brought to the U.S. illegally as children.

Trump on Sunday called for funding for a border wall and a crackdown on unaccompanied minors entering the United States as part of an agreement to protect so-called Dreamers. In its principles sent to congressional leaders, the White House also requested thousands of new immigration agents, judges and lawyers.

The top Democrats in the Senate and House criticized those terms, saying they strayed from the outlines of a deal they discussed with Trump last month. Democrats had said Trump would not insist on border wall funding in an agreement to shield roughly 800,000 young immigrants from deportation.

"The Administration can't be serious about compromise or helping the Dreamers if they begin with a list that is anathema to the Dreamers, to the immigrant community and to the vast majority of Americans," said Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., in a statement.

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY)
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House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY)

"We told the President at our meeting that we were open to reasonable border security measures alongside the DREAM Act, but this list goes so far beyond what is reasonable. This proposal fails to represent any attempt at compromise," the lawmakers added.

Last month, Trump ended the Obama-era Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program. He did so with a six-month delay to allow Congress to pass legislation protecting the immigrants.

The program, known as DACA, gives the immigrants a two-year period of protection from deportation and allows them to work in the United States.

Congressional Republicans have broadly supported some form of legislation to protect Dreamers. However, they would want it paired with tighter border security measures.

Trump's requests to Congress appear to take the border security increase even further than many GOP lawmakers would like.

The White House says the list is only meant to be a guide on immigration reform.