Democratic leaders were quick to express outrage over President Trump's decision to let Congress decide the fate of "Dreamers," children brought to the U.S. illegally.

The president passed the baton to Congress regarding the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. The Obama-era program was criticized as an overreach of executive authority.

Obama in 2012 called the "Dreamer" program "a temporary stop-gap measure."

"This is temporary. Congress needs to act," the former president said.

Democratic Party Chair Tom Perez called the decision a "devastating blow to families & our economy."

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House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi slammed the president's "cowardice" and "cruelty."

Earlier this week former presidential candidate Hillary Clinton called for people to "fight with everything we've got" to defend DACA.

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said scrapping the program was "heartless" and will "rip families apart."

Congress has six months to come up with a plan to support the almost 800,000 "Dreamers." 

President Trump's diversity chief Bruce Levell said he was "optimistic" Congress will "come up with a good plan."

"Dreamers" have said they are ready to "fight like hell."

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