In audio published Tuesday by The Washington Post, White House Chief of Staff John Kelly said that eligible undocumented individuals who did not sign up for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals might be characterized as being “too afraid” or “too lazy.”
“The difference between 690 [thousand] and 1.8 million were the people that some would say were too afraid to sign up, others would say were too lazy to get off their asses, but they didn’t sign up,” Kelly said, according to The Washington Post. “So the president, shockingly, said OK, 1.8 million, and then probably the biggest shock was in a path to citizenship. That’s beyond what anyone could have imagined.”
Kelly’s comments came hours before President Trump said he would let the government shut down if a bipartisan immigration deal to address border security was not made before the next budget deadline of February 8.
“I’d love to see a shut down if we can’t get this stuff taken care of,” Trump said. “If we have to shut it down because the Democrats don’t want safety, then shut it down.”