O'Reilly Factor Misrepresents DACA To Claim Obama's Executive Action Makes It Easier To Enter U.S. “Illegally”

A segment on Fox News' The O'Reilly Factor argued that President Obama's 2012 Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program made it so that it is now easier for undocumented immigrants to come to the country than it is for legal immigrants, a gross misrepresentation of the policy and its actual effects on current undocumented immigrants.

On the May 20 edition of his Fox News show, O'Reilly claimed that “folks who want to come to the USA legally, [are] not being able to do so because of the current policy on illegal aliens [DACA].” Fox correspondent Shannon Bream explained that legal immigrants are waiting longer to enter the U.S. because the agency in charge of immigration has prioritized current DACA recipients. O'Reilly concluded that the rules mean that “it is much more difficult to come here legally than illegally.”

But the segment failed to explain that DACA only affects young immigrants who have been in the country continuously for a number of years, having immigrated before June 15, 2007 and who were brought to the U.S. as minors. The segment also incorrectly stated that undocumented immigrants “received residency” under Obama. The 2012 program provides for no such thing: DACA merely delays the deportation and eventually grants a renewable work authorization for two years to those who comply with the list of requirements.

According to the Immigration Policy Center, DACA also allows DHS to focus resources away from targeting and removing law abiding families in the U.S. “towards individuals who pose a real risk to public safety, as well as cross-border criminal enterprises and other high-priority objectives,” saving valuable time and resources.