Saturday, August 09, 2014

Does President Obama Favor Amnesty for Undocumented Immigrants?

President Obama does not intend to grant amnesty to illegal aliens. He has asked Congress to enact immigration reform. But the House Republicans are committed to blocking anything that the President wants and anything that the Senate has passed.

The Dream Act, which is NOT amnesty, was passed by the Senate 2 years ago. The House Republicans won't put it to a vote in the House. Since the Republicans will do nothing, the President instructed the Justice Department and Homeland Security not to deport any youth that the Dream Act would apply to.

Currently, the President is considering a similar temporary order that would apply to adults who meet very strict requirements. The order would halt deportations, grant work permits and allow some to get drivers' licenses.

The President and the Democrats would prefer to pass immigration reforms but the House Republicans, who appear to be taking their instructions from Senator Ted Cruz, will not vote on any reasonable reform legislation. The only bills they have passed on immigration won't pass the Senate. One such bill would accelerate deportation, especially the deportation of the children, many of whom are qualified for asylum.

Less than one year ago Senator Marco Rubio and other prominent Republicans had proposed a bipartisan bill for immigration reform, which was expected to pass both houses. Later Rubio advised his Republicans to oppose the legislation. I suspect that Rubio changed his mind because he did not want to upset the Tea Party and their far far right base.

As the President works to accomplish something in spite of the Republicans, the Republicans have shifted from working on a bipartisan reform to suing the President for doing what they now refuse to do.

Anyone who thinks that President Obama has been soft on undocumented aliens is reminded that he has spent more to secure the border than previous presidents, he has deported many more people than any other president and he has prosecuted more employers who persistently employ undocumented aliens than any other president.

Before condemning what the administration has done or is considering, make sure you know the facts.

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