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article imageTrump stance on deportation gets more clouded, more confusing

By Marcus Hondro     Sep 7, 2016 in Politics
In the 2016 U.S. election the issue of deporting or not deporting immigrants who did not enter America legally has become a major talking point. It is highly divisive and the right stance may lead to the votes that may lead to the White House.
Trump: flip-flops on flip-flops
But while one might expect a candidate to state her or his view with clarity, to let the citizenry know what they intend to do with the estimated 11 million illegal immigrants, that isn't the case with Donald Trump. The Republican seems intent on obfuscating his immigration views, hoping to keep one group of voters while wooing another.
Keeping up with his vacillations on illegal immigrants, his contradictory pronouncements and flip-flips on his flip-flops, is akin to trying to keep up a teenager working a Rubik's Cube. The movement is coming fast and furious but it all makes little in the way of sense.
The latest pronouncement did not come in his by-now much-ballyhooed immigration speech in Phoenix. Since that speech (in which he flip-flopped on his stance of the previous week, which was a flip-flop of his main campaign stance throughout the Republican primaries) he has contradicted himself.
The immigration maze
Since his Phoenix speech Trump and GOP surrogate, Rudy Giuliani, have each suggested the Donald Trump who is "softening" on immigration is back. That's the guy from a town hall meeting with Sean Hannity the week before, the guy who says families shouldn't be sent packing if everyone pays their taxes and there's been no crimes beyond their immigration status.
On CNN's 'State of the Union' with Jake Tapper Monday, Giuliani said that Trump "would find it very, very difficult to throw out a family that has been here for 15 years and they have three children, two of whom are citizens. That is not the kind of America he wants."
But it is the kind of America, complete with a massive deportation force to round up illegals, that Trump spoke of both in Phoenix and during the Republican primaries. Trump's wall-building America.
Further, Trump invited reporters to fly on his jet on a trip between campaign stops from Cleveland to Youngstown, Ohio on Tuesday and during the flight he himself flipped back to a softer stance. He suggested, as Giuliani did, there would indeed be a path to legal status for many who entered the U.S. illegally.
But, again, in Phoenix, Trump was very much the hardliner, telling a partisan crowd "there will be no amnesty" for anyone who has entered the U.S. illegally.
"For those here today illegally who are seeking legal status," Trump said. "They will have one route and only one route: to return home and apply for re-entry under the rules of the new legal immigration system that I have outlined above.
"Those who have left to seek entry under this new system will not be awarded surplus visas," the Donald added. "But will have to enter under the immigration caps or limits that will be established."
Immigration confusion
The logistics of Trump's promised deportation force would be daunting, as would the cost. And forcefully rounding up millions of people would reveal a side of America that much of the rest of the world would surely condemn.
And once out, let's say a family of five — two parents and three kids — what would be the chances of them getting back in, for many to a place they've lived for decades?
Given they "will have to enter under immigration cap," implying that they will have no more status than a new immigrant, it could take years if ever they're allowed.
And in any case, an additional statement he made casts doubt on his sincerity. Making it seem as if he wants to have his cake (the no-amnesty policy, to woo the hard right) and eat it, too (amnesty, to woo the moderates), he said he'll visit the issue of deportation when elected.
"We're going to make that decision into the future," Trump said.
One can't be blamed for preferring to figure out a Rubik's Cube over the figuring out of what Donald Trump's policy on immigrant deportation actually is. Should he lose the election it will be a mute point.
But should he win...well, all bets are off.
More about Donald trump, Rudy giuliani, trump phoenix speech, trump on immigration
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