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White House Says No Need to Link Border Wall Funding to DACA Legislation

Combining the DREAM Act with border wall funding does not appear to be a major priority for the White House based on comments made Tuesday.

That morning, at a roundtable hosted by the Christian Science Monitor newspaper, White House Legislative Affairs Director Marc Short told reporters that the administration doesn’t want to “bind” itself in demanding a combined bill.

The Hill reports that Short does not want a scenario where one side won’t support the DREAM Act bill — which would fully codify the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program — because a legislator was against the wall.

“We’re interested in getting border security and the president has made the commitment to the American people that a barrier is important to that security,” he said. “Whether or not that is part of a DACA equation, or…another legislative vehicle, I don’t want to bind us into a construct that would make the conclusion on DACA impossible.”

Short did want to make clear, though, that the prioritization of DACA didn’t mean that the president had lost interest in the wall.

“The president is not backing off a border wall,” he said. “The president is committed to sticking by the commitment that a physical structure is needed…whether that is part of a DACA package or another package, I won’t prejudge that today, but he’s committed to getting that wall built.”