Donald Trump's Immigration Reform May Be Less Severe Than We Thought
Donald Trump met with a group of Hispanic supporters on Saturday to discuss his immigration policy.
The candidate has not been able to get much support from the Hispanic community throughout this election cycle—polls show that about 80% of Hispanics oppose him. The number is understandable considering the day he announced his candidacy he also accused Mexico of sending over rapists and other criminals. He has since promised to deport the 11 million people living in this country illegally (not all of them are Mexican, but that’s where his focus has been), and build a wall on the border between the U.S. and Mexico to keep them out.
Several people who met with Trump on Saturday told NBC that the Republican nominee seems to be easing his stance on illegal immigration. “He definitely was seeking input from this group of Latinos in terms of immigration reform,” Jesus Marquez, a Nevada political analyst and Latino outreach strategist, told the news outlet. “He is expecting for us to lay out points of a future plan for immigration.”
Trump is scheduled to speak in Colorado on Thursday, where he’s expected to lay out details for his updated immigration policy. Jacob Monty, an immigration lawyer and co-founder of the Latino-Jewish Alliance, told NBC that he thinks Trump will come out with a “very realistic, compassionate way of solving the problem.”
Monty said he would be satisfied if Trump proposes “touchback,” three and 10-year bars, or a guest worker program. Touchback is a policy that was proposed back in 2007 that requires illegal immigrants to return to their country of origin before they can apply for a visa to come back. Three and 10-year bars were in place during Bill Clinton’s tenure. Under this law, undocumented immigrants would have to go back to their home country for either three or 10 years, depending on how long they’ve been residing in the U.S. unlawfully.
Hillary Clinton’s campaign does not believe that this changes anything. Clinton’s national political director, Amanda Renteria, told Fortune in a statement:
Let's remember that Trump started this campaign by calling Mexicans rapists and continued to find ways to disparage the Latino community by promising to implement a deportation force that would deport 16 million people, end DACA, end birthright citizenship, conduct round ups of families, ban Muslims and other immigrants from entering the United States, and build a concrete wall along the border. If true, this is a cynical attempt from Donald Trump to distract from his dangerous policies that he doubled down on just this week in a new ad. Donald Trump will be Donald Trump and what's clear is that he's dangerous for the Latino community.
Donald Trump’s campaign could not immediately be reached for comment.