Give credit where it’s due: Donald Trump, who made his claim for fame with an explosive comment on Mexican immigrants, has somehow changed his ways. The bad news: we have no idea where he’s going. In the past few days, Trump has seemed to soften on his initial stance of forcibly removing the millions of illegal immigrants currently residing in the United States, although his surrogates have tried their best to paint a picture of unwavering consistency from the primaries to this point in the election. The apparent reversal has brought harsh criticism from both sides—from liberals, obviously—but even from conservatives such as Sarah Palin, who called in to “The O’Reilly Factor” and explained that Trump “losing his spine” could lead to an erosion of support.
Trump’s immigration policy still revolves around not granting an amnesty and obstructing any path to citizenship, although this only leaves forced deportation as the only method of dealing with the problem. Without a blanket amnesty, illegal immigrants will still exist in the United States and can only be removed with the very policy Trump has weakened his stance on this week. While my personal opinion is that a blanket amnesty and a path to citizenship will turn this population in legal limbo into an effective economic sector, should we be following Trump’s line of logic his reversal is especially problematic.
The reversal means that Trump will now have to tentatively support a path to legalization, a policy he mocked candidates such as Jeb Bush in the primaries for. It’s typical for a candidate like Trump, who uses bombast to gain votes but softens his stance later to cast a wider net. And once again, the American people learned that there really is not detailed, rock-solid proposal on how to deal with the immigration issue.