Recently, Congressman Bruce Poliquin (ME-02) released a statement on his views concerning the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.

“Congress has waited far too long to act on serious border security and to implement an effective system to control who enters our country. It’s the federal government’s responsibility to establish immigration laws that work for current American families while welcoming those wanting to become law-abiding citizens of the United States."

“America is a country of immigrants, like my own family. However, no President can simply side-step Congress and create immigration laws on his or her own. The Constitution is clear that the Legislative branch is responsible for passing laws to be presented to the President for signature.

The Obama Administration acted illegally in creating the DACA program in 2012. I strongly opposed this action—joining a resolution condemning it—because it was unconstitutional and a violation of executive power. Now, the current Administration is facing legal challenges from several states if the DACA policy continues.

“As someone who raised my son mostly as a single dad, I am particularly sensitive to the fact that a young child has little or no control over the movements of his or her family. A child should not be held responsible for the actions of parents who chose to break our immigration laws.

“There are nearly 800,000 people in the current DACA program, including 35,000 in New England.  Some of these individuals grew up believing they were Americans with no knowledge of their parents’ actions. I believe if these people have been fully law-abiding members of our society, they should be protected from deportation through legislative action by Congress. At the same time, we need to continue to secure and control our borders. We need to continue our work to end illegal immigration.

“Congress must act to improve our border security; to find a solution to address those well-meaning individuals now caught in DACA status, and to update our immigration policies which reduce incentives to break the law. America can continue to be a nation of laws, border security, and controlled immigration.”