If Trump didn't break his promise, he certainly fudged it, which presents his media boosters with a loyalty test: Do they stand by the president and tell his supporters that what they got from him on Tuesday is good enough, or do they hold Trump accountable for failing to deliver the swift policy change on which he campaigned?
After Sessions spoke at a news conference, Fox News quickly framed Trump's DACA decision as a pledge basically fulfilled.
“This is a political hot potato,” anchor Jon Scott said, “but you've got to give the president and the administration credit: They promised to do this during the campaign — or, at least, said they were going to crack down on illegal immigration — and this appears to be part of that portfolio.”
But Ann Coulter — who championed Trump's candidacy, largely because of his stated positions on immigration — predicted before the president's decision was official that he would lose his base if he enabled Congress to save the DACA program.
Breitbart News seemed torn — happy that Trump took a step toward ending DACA but skeptical that dreamers would ultimately be deported. The top headline on the website run by Stephen K. Bannon, Trump's former chief strategist, asked whether Congress and “Javanka” (Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump) will secure a replacement.
A second headline said the program “allegedly” expires in six months.
The Drudge Report practically ignored the DACA announcement, burying it under news about Hurricane Irma and linking to an Associated Press report that did not pass judgment on Trump's move. Matt Drudge, it appears, is reluctant weigh in.
Infowars founder Alex Jones, who came on the air for his daily radio show an hour after the Sessions news conference, praised Trump for “reasserting our sovereignty.”
But Jones quickly moved off the subject of Trump's DACA decision, using it as a springboard for a tirade against “globalists,” who he claimed are laying the groundwork for some kind of artificial-intelligence takeover.
“Man, I had a dream last night about AI takeover that was unbelievable and so graphic and so step-by-step, like I was being given a briefing in chapters of what was going to come,” Jones said. “And I woke up about 3 a.m. with a sad, sickening, overwhelmed feeling.”
Jones went on to claim that two months before 9/11, he dreamed about planes flying into the World Trade Center. Apparently Tuesday's big news is that Jones is a prophet.
So far, there is no uniform response in the pro-Trump press. If the president was hoping for resounding approval, he did not get it.