As he promised, former President Barack Obama spoke out against today's decision to end the DACA program and place 800,000 young people at risk of deportation to countries they do not even know.
Writing on Facebook, Obama called the decision "cruel" and "self-defeating."
"To target these young people is wrong – because they have done nothing wrong," Obama wrote. "It is self-defeating – because they want to start new businesses, staff our labs, serve in our military, and otherwise contribute to the country we love."
"And it is cruel. What if our kid’s science teacher, or our friendly neighbor turns out to be a Dreamer? Where are we supposed to send her? To a country she doesn’t know or remember, with a language she may not even speak?," he continued.
Obama also pointed out that DACA only happened after he waited and waited for Congress to deal with the issue of those kids.
Over the years, politicians of both parties have worked together to write legislation that would have told these young people – our young people – that if your parents brought you here as a child, if you’ve been here a certain number of years, and if you’re willing to go to college or serve in our military, then you’ll get a chance to stay and earn your citizenship. And for years while I was President, I asked Congress to send me such a bill.
That bill never came. And because it made no sense to expel talented, driven, patriotic young people from the only country they know solely because of the actions of their parents, my administration acted to lift the shadow of deportation from these young people, so that they could continue to contribute to our communities and our country. We did so based on the well-established legal principle of prosecutorial discretion, deployed by Democratic and Republican presidents alike, because our immigration enforcement agencies have limited resources, and it makes sense to focus those resources on those who come illegally to this country to do us harm. Deportations of criminals went up. Some 800,000 young people stepped forward, met rigorous requirements, and went through background checks. And America grew stronger as a result.
Read all of his response here.