Dreamer Deadlock Energizes Democrats' Midterm Bid

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Democrats gunning for U.S. congressional gains in November’s midterms hope to capitalize on the lack of a deal to protect young undocumented immigrants — dubbed Dreamers by their advocates — from deportation.

The issue resonates especially in California, Arizona, Texas, Florida and Nevada — states with large Hispanic populations, Sahil Kapur writes.

President Donald Trump has moved to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA, program, even though polls show a majority of Americans, especially Democrats and independents, support giving the affected young people legal status.

The White House has sought to blame Democrats for the impasse, with officials stressing their openness to a deal. But Trump yesterday seemed to shut the door on that idea, with a tweet that warned of the peril the country faces from illegal immigration and ended with “NO MORE DACA DEAL!”

Global Headlines

Gaza tinderbox | Israel vowed to employ greater force to quell Palestinian protests along the Gaza Strip border, rejecting allegations it used excessive firepower against demonstrations on Good Friday in which 18 people were killed — the highest toll since the 2014 war. The U.S. blocked a UN Security Council call for an investigation into the deaths at the rally that marked the start of a six-week campaign designed to raise international awareness of their plight as refugees.

Amazon rant | Investors will be watching Amazon closely today to see whether a fresh round of criticism from Trump over the weekend shakes the recent resilience of the e-commerce giant’s shares. Amazon and the Washington Post — which the company’s founder Jeff Bezos also owns — have been regular punching bags for Trump, prompting questions about whether the administration will seek new regulations on the company.

Costa Rica’s surprising election | Pro-gay marriage leader Carlos Alvarado was elected president yesterday in a landslide that confounded polls predicting a win for a conservative preacher who made his name as a journalist and writer of evangelical songs. The novelist and former labor minister, who’ll take office on May 8, pledged in his victory speech to rein in a record fiscal deficit.

Kim’s K-pop moment | North Korean leader Kim Jong Un continued his string of diplomatic surprises by attending a goodwill performance by some of South Korea’s best-known pop stars yesterday in Pyongyang. The decision to mingle with musicians after the show — including the girl group Red Velvet — may help soften perceptions in Seoul ahead of Kim’s planned summit with Trump next month.

Shadowing a crown prince | Saudi crown prince Mohammed bin Salman’s grand tour of the U.S. has been a wild ride, Vivian Nereim reports in a behind-the-scenes look. The visit, in the midst of his bid to remake the once fiercely closed-off conservative kingdom, has often been chaotic amid apparent tension over how much of the prince’s engagements to publicize.

And finally ... Brussels, the European city Trump labeled a ‘Hellhole,’ is picking a fight with the president in an area close to his heart: real-estate development. Marine Strauss writes that the Belgian capital has taken action to block Washington’s plan to move the U.S. embassy from its current downtown location near Russia’s mission to a bucolic neighborhood on the city’s southern outskirts. The point of contention? The new building is too celebrated for what the Americans have planned for it.

 

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