Obamateurism of the Day

Arizona’s new immigration-enforcement law has caused many in political life to rethink their assumptions — but not their geography. In a town-hall meeting in Ottumwa, Iowa this week, Barack Obama tried walking the fine line between welcoming people to the country and actually enforcing the law, while somehow ignoring the fact that his job really only involves doing the latter. Obama tried to salute the US by pointing out that we treat immigrants different than other countries do … like, say, that big country across the pond called Europe:

So the challenge we have now is how do we set up a system where, yes, we’re welcoming new people to our country, which by the way makes us stronger. One of the things that is a huge advantage for America compared to countries like Europe is, actually, we’re constantly replenishing ourselves with hungry, driven people who are coming here, and they want to work, and they start a business, and our population is younger and more dynamic, and that’s a good thing!

One of the things that is usually an advantage is that we have a legal system of immigration that allows those people to enter the US properly. The problem isn’t that we don’t welcome legal immigrants. It’s that we don’t bother to enforce our immigration laws so that we can have more legal immigration that favors the law-abiding and productive over those who start off their stay in America by breaking our laws. And one of the problems with our brilliant President is that he’s apparently never learned that Europe isn’t actually a country, but a continent which contains many countries.

Got an Obamateurism of the Day? If you see a foul-up by Barack Obama, e-mail it to me at [email protected] with the quote and the link to the Obamateurism. I’ll post the best Obamateurisms on a daily basis, depending on how many I receive. Include a link to your blog, and I’ll give some link love as well. And unlike Slate, I promise to end the feature when Barack Obama leaves office.

Illustrations by Chris Muir of Day by Day. Be sure to read the adventures of Sam, Zed, Damon, and Jan every day!