The PJ Tatler

The Courts May Be the Best Route to Stop Obama's Amnesty

As President Obama undoubtedly hoped, the mere threat of unleashing unilateral amnesty is now dividing Republicans over strategy. Says the Daily Mail:

A disagreement between Republican lawmakers over a proposed strategy to block President Barack Obama’s coming immigration mandate took a nasty turn on Thursday as a battle between two powerful factions of the GOP spilled into the press.

On one side of the ring are conservative lawmakers, including Rep. Matt Salmon of Arizona and Sen. Jeff Sessions of Alabama, who want to insert language into future spending legislation that bars immigration agencies from using their funding to issue the roughly 5 million new work permits the president is expected to authorize tomorrow.

At the other end are moderates, like House Appropriations Committee Chairman Hal Rogers, who don’t want to disrupt the budget process or risk another government shutdown.

If Congress does not pass a new bill disbursing federal funds before Dec. 12, the government will undergo a partial shut down, with other essential services and staff remaining in place until a new resolution is adopted.

And a shutdown is that thing that we’re supposed to fear like the monster on the airplane wing in that Twilight Zone episode…even though voters gave Republicans even more power after the last shutdown — during which the Obama administration overreached in such ugly ways that they locked veterans out of their own monuments.

I’m not saying that I favor a shutdown, just…look, the Republicans have more power now, when the last shutdown was supposed to destroy the party and salt the earth under its feet. That didn’t happen. Apocalypse did not descend on the earth. A partial shutdown to block this thing that the American people don’t support need not be the end of the world.

Yes, Sean Davis writes, Congress could de-fund and therefore de-fang Obama’s amnesty. He makes a good case.

The GOP could, through effective and unified messaging, hammer home the point that when Democrats claim that the Republicans have “left Obama no choice,” the Democrats are really saying that the American voters have left them no choice — but to reach for power that the voters have taken away from them. Effective and unified messaging could point out that Obama’s move, supported by most Democrats and many in the corrupt media, is basically a childish tantrum and a punishment that the out-of-favor party is inflicting on the nation for refusing to bend to that party’s will. America, you voted Republican? We Democrats will show you!

The problem with that is, the business interests that would mostly fund such messaging would not agree with it. They want the amnesty, maybe not in the manner it’s happening, but they want it all the same. So they’re unlikely to fund a major messaging effort to block it.

My impression going into this is that the courts move too slowly and would therefore be a poor means of blocking this. But Mickey Kaus reminds us that the courts can move quickly when they want to.

Here you have a president going directly against the law and his own word to seize power that is clearly given to Congress in the Constitution. There is no emergency situation dictating the president’s move or its timing. The courts do have a history of intervening, quickly, in other similar circumstances in American history.

And don’t assume it will take forever (as Rand Paul seems to think). On April 8, 1952, during the Korean War, President Truman seized crucial steel facilities. The steel companies immediately sought and got an injunction. On June 2, 1952, less than two months after Truman acted, the Supreme Court swatted him down.

Courts can move quickly when they want to. This smells like one of those cases.

Indeed it does. There is no emergency, but the president will create pressure once he speaks tonight. Millions of people will begin applying for work permits, Obamacare (I know, the Democrats say that the newly minted guests won’t be eligible — they’re lying), etc.

The courts could provide a stay which would halt granting even a single amnesty until the case can be heard in full. That would give time for full arguments to be made, right up to and in the Supreme Court. This court has a mixed record when it comes to Obama, having stopped his illegal recess appointments but having bought Obamacare. So there’s no guarantee that the court would stick to the Constitution. But at least it’s a chance.

We’re not even forced to depend on the Beltway Republicans to get to court. Texas and other states may file suit as early as tomorrow. Gov.-elect Greg Abbott has already said as much, and he filed dozens of suits against the Obama administration over the years when he was attorney general.