Immigration advocates are urging President Barack Obama to go all out in using the power of the executive to change the Nation’s immigration policy.
The President vowed Monday from the Rose Garden to act unilaterally to change the how the U.S. handles illegal immigrants, but the actions Obama hinted at fall short of what some liberal reform advocates would like to see.
“The administration has unquestionable legal authority to provide all those who would qualify for citizenship under the bipartisan Senate Bill affirmative status with work authorization while making immigration enforcement more just,” Richard Trumka, head of the AFL-CIO said Tuesday in a statement. “The administration should act boldly and without further delay.”
Democratic members of the House of Representatives are also calling on Obama to go big. Representative Steny Hoyer (D-Md.), the minority whip, is urging the President to use “every administrative tool at his disposal to address our immigration challenge.”
The left’s executive-order immigration reform plan includes a number of policy proposals submitted to the Homeland Security Department in April by the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, things like: a broad expansion of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, allowing DACA illegals to enlist in the military and their family members to remain in the country, and disallowing local governments to enforce immigration laws.
The GOP, meanwhile, is imploring the President to slow the flood of young illegal immigrants by ending the DACA policy altogether and publically announcing that new arrivals will not receive legal status.
Representative Darrell Issa (R-Ca.), along with 33 other GOP Congressmen, sent a letter to the President Wednesday.
“As our country faces an unprecedented surge in the arrival of unaccompanied alien children (UACs) at our southwestern border, we call on you to immediately end the failed policies that encourage young individuals to put themselves in peril, leave their home countries, and make a long and dangerous journey to enter our country illegally,” they wrote.
But earlier in the week, White House spokesman Josh Earnest hinted that the President may instead be ready to act on Democrats suggestions.
“The President was pretty clear that he wants the secretary of Homeland Security and the attorney general to cast a pretty wide net, and consider a wide range of options for doing as much as possible to address the problems,” Earnest told reporters at the White House Tuesday.