Newt Gingrich, writing at CNN, contrasts the words that President Obama used to describe his deferred deportation plan with what his administration is actually proposing.
The President also said in his speech that his actions would offer relief only to people who met certain criteria he described, including having child dependents in the United States. But the actual policy memo makes clear that “DHS will direct all of its enforcement resources at pursuing” people who are “national security threats, serious criminals, and recent border crossers.”
In other words, there will be one group, estimated at 4 million or so, who are eligible for the new work authorization program. But at the same time, there will be no resources directed at enforcing immigration law against the other 7 million people here illegally as long as they do not fall into a few narrow categories, according to the President’s Office of Legislative Affairs. And indeed, a “senior administration official” told Roll Call that the administration “will order immigration agents to prioritize deportations of criminals and recent arrivals — and let people who are not on that priority list go free.” This is not at all the program the President described in his speech.
As I wrote yesterday, drunk drivers, sex abusers, drug traffickers, and even burglars will not be “prioritized” as far as deportations are concerned. Most local governments don’t turn illegals over to the feds anyway, so not much will change. Still, for the federal government to ignore the immigration laws already on the books by looking the other way and “deferring” deportations for almost all 11 million illegal aliens is a breathtaking expansion of executive power.
Gingrich, quite appropriately, called Obama’s address a “Gruber speech”:
Listening to a speech in which the President lied about what he was proposing and lied about his authority to implement it, it was hard not to think of the Gruber model — which is really the Obama model, after all. He said what he needed to say to do what he wants to do.
Immigrants will “get right with the law,” but not be “legalized,” just as Obamacare’s taxes weren’t taxes, until they were taxes before the Supreme Court, but after which they weren’t taxes again. Only immigrants who meet certain specific criteria will be eligible for relief, except for the millions of other people he doesn’t mention for whom he will also stop enforcing the law.
In the past few years, the President has described 22 times on video how he doesn’t have the legal and constitutional authority to take many of the actions he announced Thursday night.
“With respect to the notion that I can just suspend deportations through executive order, that’s just not the case, because there are laws on the books that Congress has passed,” he said in 2011. “…[W]e’ve got three branches of government. Congress passes the law. The executive branch’s job is to enforce and implement those laws. …There are enough laws on the books by Congress that are very clear in terms of how we have to enforce our immigration system that for me to simply through executive order ignore those congressional mandates would not conform with my appropriate role as President.”
President Obama made a good case back then. It’s a shame he apparently thinks, like Gruber, that Americans are all so stupid we won’t figure out he’s not telling us the truth today.
The president also claimed that his amnesty plan would slow the rush to the border by illegals. With history as a guide, that’s hornswaggle. Look what happened after his unilateral action in 2012 with DREAMers being legalized. The crush of illegal alien children at the border overwhelmed our ability to deal with it. Now he announces that unless you’re a murderer or a terrorist, you can come to the U.S. and not be deported (as long as you avoid the authorities long enough). If past is prologue, you can expect a surge of illegals at the border in the near future.
At least Gruber was honest enough to come out and say what he was thinking. Obama used subterfuge to disguise his true intent: overturning our immigration laws.