There is a very easy way for Democrats to get major concessions from President Donald Trump on immigration: Give him his Wall.
This is the key to a deal codifying the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, the Obama-era de facto amnesty for a segment of so-called Dreamers. All it takes is giving Trump a plausible start to the Wall that the president can then, in his inimitable way, promote as the greatest structure built on a border since Hadrian began his famous handiwork at the northern limit of the Roman Empire in 122.
That the Democrats very likely won’t do this speaks to their irrational aversion to a Wall that they can’t view dispassionately any more than Trump can.
It used to be that enhanced security on the border, and yes, a physical structure that in places is effectively a wall, had bipartisan support. The Secure Fence Act of 2006 passed the House by a vote of 283-138 and the Senate 80-19. It called for building roughly 700 miles of double-layer fencing on the border, and no one seemed to believe that the United States had irreparably sullied its reputation.
This wasn’t the first time anyone had thought of a fence, of course. There had been barriers in the San Diego area for a very long time, although not particularly robust ones. Beginning in the 1980s, more serious structures were built. According to the San Diego Union-Tribune, there are 46 miles of fencing overall and 13 miles of double fencing in the San Diego-Tijuana corridor, where there used to be a nightly influx of undocumented immigrants. In some sections, the barriers are 10-feet-tall military helicopter pads indistinguishable from a wall. Again, no one believes San Diego has closed itself off from the world by adopting a common-sensical and — in this urban area — effective prophylactic against illegal immigration.