Is executive amnesty a briar patch?

The reaction to Obama’s 2012 “deferred action” amnesty of so-called young DREAMers showed that even a relatively small amnesty (1 to 2 million people) can produce a big influx of the undocumented. These newcomers might believe, with some justification, that now they don’t have to wait for a compliant Congress to legalize them — only for a pro-amnesty president with an expansive idea of his power and need to placate Univision. Plus we now know there is a whole industry — the coyote industry — with a vested interest in telling would-be immigrants they’ll be able to stay, even if that involves exaggerating both the actual provisions of the law and the realistic prospects of amnesty.

Suppose, for example, Obama decides to give “deferred action” to the parents of DREAMers. Look, the coyotes may say — not only is the U.S. legalizing those who come as minors through “no fault of their own.” It’s also legalizing the parents whose fault it was! Do you think a country that does that is going to kick you or your kids out if they manage to sneak in? You’ll all eventually get drivers licenses and work permits and Social Security Numbers and affirmative action eligibility and maybe health insurance, just like the people Obama has “deferred.”

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