Government & Politics

'No Executive Action on Immigration Coming'

Obama tells several "faith leaders" that it's Congress's job to act. If only he were trustworthy.

Apr. 16, 2014

Barack Obama met with several “faith leaders” about immigration reform Tuesday, and they claim he told them that Congress needs to lead on immigration and that there would be no immediate unilateral executive action on the issue. And by no action, Obama has so far meant no enforcement, which makes all the more laughable the moniker given him by some Hispanic leaders: “Deporter in Chief.”

White House Press Secretary Jay Carney spun yesterday’s meeting: “I think the president believes that there is an opportunity that still exists for House Republicans to follow the lead of the Senate, including Republicans in the Senate, and take up and pass comprehensive immigration reform. And [Tuesday’s] meeting that the president had with faith leaders demonstrates and reinforces the fact that there is a broad, unusually broad, coalition that supports that effort, that supports comprehensive immigration reform and all the benefits that making reform the law would provide to the country, to our security, to our economy, to our businesses. I think it highlights the isolation that House Republicans find themselves in when so many, not just politicians or advocacy leaders, but folks across the country support doing the right thing here and the irony, of course, is that there is a really strong conservative argument to be made on behalf of comprehensive immigration reform.”

House Speaker John Boehner has explained on multiple occasions that Obama can’t be trusted to enforce the law, and, in light of that, House Republicans have no intention of being suckered into passing reform. Though that doesn’t mean they won’t actually be suckered into it. Democrats are working on a discharge petition to force their hand.

In truth, we too think immigration reform is needed – we just don’t think any form of amnesty ought to be part of the discussion. Reform should center on border security and the legal entry process. But as Boehner said, it’s hard to negotiate with the other side when they’re not enforcing existing law. That mistrust is compounded given that Department of Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson says that illegals have “earned the right to be citizens” and that Joe Biden says they “are already American citizens.” How can we then take them seriously?

The real reason Democrats want “reform,” of course, is for votes. The Center for Immigration Studies has a new report on the political effect of immigration – both legal and illegal. Long story short, immigrants vote heavily Democrat. As the study’s author, James Gimpel, writes, “Immigrants, particularly Hispanics and Asians, have policy preferences when it comes to the size and scope of government that are more closely aligned with progressives than with conservatives. As a result, survey data show a two-to-one party identification with Democrats over Republicans.”

That’s yet another reason why Democrats focus on “income inequality” and class warfare. Immigrants tend to be poor, and it makes a difference when the first thing that they hear is that one major party “hates the poor.” The answer for immigrants and native-born alike is Liberty, free-enterprise and limited government. The hard part is convincing people that the easy road of government dependence isn’t the right road.

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