Cracking down on illegal immigration was at the heart of Trump’s campaign — and the focus of some of his toughest talk and his biggest promises.
A year later, Immigration and Customs Enforcement reports that border crossings are down — a chief bright spot for the president — and as promised, Trump did indeed lower the number of legal refugees, to 45,000, the lowest cap since the Refugee Act was passed in 1980.
In September, the White House announced a plan to rescind the Delayed Action for Childhood Arrivals program, one of the protections President Barack Obama had ordered for young undocumented immigrants brought to the country as children. Trump's action, which garnered bipartisan criticism, appeared to clarify his campaign trail indecision about what to do about Dreamers, as recipients are known, but Trump later muddied that waters by tweeting he might "revisit the issue” if Congress failed to act in the next six months. So far, Congress has not touched it.
Much of the rest of Trump's promised agenda is stalled, however. Wall prototypes are nearly finished in San Diego, but Mexico and Congress have shown no appetite for paying the billions of dollars building the wall would cost.
The deportation forces that the president suggested would round up millions have not materialized, nor has he been able to round up the 3 million “bad hombres” he said he’d prioritize for deportation upon winning election a year ago. As of early September, ICE data showed that deportations were down from the same time period a year prior despite arrests being on the rise.
Though Trump’s stance on legal immigration was less clear-cut, the president this year backed “merit based” legislation that would reduce legal immigration by half. Congress has not considered the bill.
The president also offered up three different travel bans, barring people from certain countries from visiting or immigrating to the U.S., but all have been largely derailed by the courts.