The DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) program protected undocumented immigrants who entered the US as children from deportation. According to Attorney General Jeff Sessions, the administration will no longer process new applications, but will renew permits to DACA recipients for the next six months.
"The gentleman who is called president says this is about jobs," Whoopi Goldberg said. "I keep wondering what jobs the children have taken that he's worried about?"
Sunny Hostin was also opposed to the move, pointing out that there are currently 800,000 Dreamers, the group DACA protects.
"It's not a path to citizenship. Every 2 years they must re-apply. There's a thousand dollar fee every two years, they also pay taxes, they pay into social security, all for benefits they don't have," she continued. "Guess what: We get rid of them, we lose $24.6 billion over 10 years, that's how much money these people -- I think, Americans -- put into our country. If the Trump administration is all about jobs and saving money and having money in the United States, then would you then get rid of people who contribute $24 billion?"
"That's the lie. It's not about that," Joy Behar responded. "None of these kids are from Sweden or Norway, they're all from these so-called brown countries, non-white people. There's racism involved here, why don't they just admit it?"
Jedediah Bila then said Trump is not deporting anyone and President Obama did "not have the authority" to make the original executive order in the first place. "This is something Congress has to do," she explained.
When Sunny said POTUS does have the power, Bila said, "He doesn't, the president can't make immigration policy."
"President Obama is on record saying that he did not have the authority to do that and then he went and did it anyways," she continued. "All this does is give the power to Congress. I would not send these people home, but I don't agree with lawlessness, but you have to let Congress to its job."
Goldberg ended the debate by honoring Alonso Guillen and Tomas Carreon, two men who grew up as undocumented immigrants in the US and died saving Hurricane Harvey victims in Texas.
Whoopi said she hoped their actions "remind people that these DACA kids don't sit around laying around, these two young men decided that they wanted to go and help. They lost their lives while saving victims of Hurricane Harvey. They didn't have to, they chose to," she said. "They drove to go do this. For me, this is all kinda crazy."