Some of America's top CEOs are none too pleased to hear that President Trump is "seriously considering" an end to the deferred action for childhood arrivals (DACA) program, an Obama-era policy that allows young immigrants who were brought to America illegally as children (colloquially known as DREAMers, after the protective DREAM Act) to avoid deportation and temporarily work and study in the U.S. "There's no issue that's more gut-wrenching for us," one "top Silicon Valley executive" told Axios. "These are people who came out of the shadows, got jobs and mortgages — we see this as betraying fellow Americans."
Many CEOs are already preparing for the worst since research shows that as many as 700,000 jobs could be at risk with the termination of the program. "Some multinationals are even making contingency plans to move vulnerable workers to overseas locations," Axios writes.
In April, Trump told DREAMers to "rest easy" because "we are after the criminals." A month earlier, BuzzFeed News had reported that then-chief strategist Stephen Bannon helped save the program: "Bannon's economic nationalist view is very much rooted in culture, and so eliminating DACA wouldn't be a priority for him because 'these kids have been here and they're going to schools here,'" BuzzFeed News wrote, citing a person close to the president. Bannon has since been ousted from the White House.
Aides are also nervous about Trump's potential decision on DACA, Axios adds. "This is different," said one White House insider. "This is families being torn apart. This is something that will follow [the aides] when they go back to real life."