With the out-of-control illegal immigration crisis putting political pressure on the Obama administration to halt the flood of illegal aliens pouring across our borders, the administration seeks to use executive actions as its prime strategy. These actions include plans to defer the deportations of millions of people living in the United States illegally, as well as increasing the limits on legal immigration by making green cards available to hundreds of thousands of high-tech workers and relatives of U.S. citizens and permanent residents.
Legal and illegal immigration are, of course, separate matters, but even those who favor increasing the legal visa quota limits generally prefer that the changes be made though legislative, not executive, action.
President Obama is expected to start issuing executive actions at the end of summer, after he receives formal recommendations from Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson. Obama “believes it’s important to understand and consider the full range of perspectives on this issue,” White House Deputy Press Secretary Shawn Turner said recently.
The proposal to increase the number of green cards was opposed by Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.), who objects to American workers facing competition from immigrants in a tight job market. In an August 18 release posted on his Senate website, Sessions stated:
We have now arrived at a crisis point in American politics. Politico reports that the White House is meeting with the world’s largest corporations to discuss how executive actions on immigration could benefit them financially.
The Administration has solicited “a list of asks for the tech sector” and “provisions for low-skilled workers for industries, like construction”— including green cards and work authorizations — in order to “get them on board” with the President’s planned executive amnesty….
The same group of CEOs who helped write the Senate’s Gang of Eight immigration bill in secret is now scheming with the White House to extract by executive fiat what was denied to them by the American people and Congress.
Even while they demand more foreign workers, these companies are laying off current employees in droves. Cisco, which Politico reports met with White House aides to advocate for more foreign workers, just last week announced its intent to lay off 6,000 employees. Last month, Microsoft declared it would lay off 18,000 workers.
One member of the Senate’s Gang of Eight who is considered a favorite of Tea Party “conservatives” to run for president in 2016 is Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) The Gang of Eight’s bill passed the Senate, but has not advanced in the House, largely because many conservative Republican representatives objected to the bill’s effective amnesty for illegal aliens. Rep. Lamar Smith (R-Texas), said in a statement quoted by CNS News last year: “It’s hard to believe, but the Senate immigration bill is worse than we thought. Despite assurances, the border is not secured before almost everyone in the country illegally is given amnesty. The bill guarantees there will be a rush across the border to take advantage of massive amnesty.”
However, things have changed on the political scene and Rubio, in an exclusive interview with Mathew Boyle of Breitbart News on August 26, took a decidedly stronger stance against granting amnesty to illegals. “I continue to believe our system needs to be reformed and I’ve learned in the last year that because of such an incredible distrust of the federal government no matter who’s in charge, the only way you’re going to be able to deal with this issue is by first securing the border and ensuring that illegal immigration is under control,” Rubio told Boyle.
Rubio sent Obama a letter on August 27 saying he no longer agreed with a “comprehensive” approach to the immigration problem, pairing border security with a years-long path for illegal aliens to eventually obtain citizenship (a.k.a., amnesty).
Rubio said he also told the president to cancel a rumored plan to expand unilateral amnesty granted under the 2012 Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program to individuals who came to the United States illegally as minors. The expansion may include as many as five million people.
“If the president goes through with this executive action that he’s threatening, not only does it raise very serious constitutional issues but in my opinion it sets back the cause of reform for a long time,” Rubio said in the interview.
Of course, the true constitutionalist, of which former representative and presidential candidate Ron Paul is a perfect example, takes the position that we must secure our borders and not grant amnesty or special benefits to those who are here illegally. During the presidential debate in 2011 and 2012, Paul said: “A nation without borders is no nation at all. It doesn’t make sense to fight terrorists abroad while leaving our front door unlocked.”
Paul said in response to an On the Issues survey:
My approach to immigration is somewhat different than the others. Mine is you deal with it economically. We’re in worse shape now because we subsidize immigration. We give food stamps, Social Security, free medical care, free education and amnesty. So you subsidize it, and you have a mess. Conditions have changed. And I think this means that we should look at immigration differently. It’s an economic issue more than anything. If our economy was in good health, I don’t think there’d be an immigration problem. We’d be looking for workers and we would be very generous.
The problem with the Obama administration’s approach to “immigration reform” is that it ignores the Constitution. It ignores laws that require apprehension and deportation of illegal immigrants, and then attempts to substitute executive actions for laws passed by Congress to supposedly solve the problem.