Via the Corner, it’s interesting that he picked a day when the media’s consumed with SCOTUS news to pull this. Maybe he figures that all the lefties who care about amnesty will notice regardless whereas independents, from whom he fears a potential backlash, might be distracted. Never underestimate how short the low-information voter’s attention span can be, my friends.
Wait a sec. He’s using unilateral executive action to … increase border security?
The move was spurred by House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, telling the president the House had no plans to vote on any immigration legislation this year, a White House official said.
“I would greatly prefer Congress actually do something. I take executive action only when we have a serious problem, a serious issue, and Congress chooses to do nothing.,” Mr. Obama said Monday in the Rose Garden of the White House. “And in this situation the failure of House Republicans to pass a darn bill is bad for security, its bad for our economy, and its bad for our future.”
Mr. Obama intends to direct Secretary of Homeland Security (DHS) Jeh Johnson and Attorney General Eric Holder to move “available and appropriate enforcement resources” from the interior of the country down to the southern border.
“Protecting public safety is and will remain a top priority, and we will continue to focus on removing those who have committed serious crimes from our interior, but we will redirect other resources to make sure we keep doing what it takes to keep our border secure,” the official said.
Last I checked, he was planning to ask Congress to change a few Bush-era rules so that he can expedite deportations of young illegals to Central America. It makes sense that he’d be a stickler for legislative authority on that; invoking executive authority to beef up the border is precisely the opposite of what his base wants him to do. And yet … here he is, invoking executive authority to beef up the border. Hmmm.
Maybe he’s thinking strategically. He knows he’s eventually going to issue an order relaxing deportation protocols for illegals who are already here and he also knows he’s going to catch hell from Republicans for it. So he’s throwing them a curveball, using executive authority to temporarily improve border security to disarm GOP attacks. This achieves three things for him: It “proves” that he can be trusted to enforce new security provisions if Congress passes a comprehensive deal; it slows the flow of young illegals, which has become a major political obstacle on the path to a mass amnesty; and, assuming the GOP puts up no fuss, it sets a precedent that Republicans are just fine with bold executive action when it’s in the service of their own immigration goals. That’s a lame “gotcha” since there’s nothing objectionable about the president re-positioning security assets, but rest assured that O will bring it up when, not if, he eventually issues his executive order on deportations. “How come Republicans are whining about executive overreach today but didn’t whine when I sent more Border Patrol down south a few weeks ago?” Today is all about the laying the groundwork, I think. That’s why Luis Gutierrez is excited. He knows what’s coming.
Exit question: Which article of the Constitution sets forth this principle? Quote: “I take executive action only when we have a serious problem, a serious issue and Congress chooses to do nothing.” I believe that’s the “I get to do sh*t if Congress doesn’t” clause, no?