20 Nov 2014 11:40 PM EST
- by Jorge Vargas, Editor
President Obama revealed his immigration plan today, granting asylum to up to five million illegal immigrants. Among those five million are parents of the children who received Deferred Action in his 2012 immigration executive order. Deportations were also halted for children who came to the U.S. between 2007 and 2010.
The reactions from the Republican party were unsurprising. House Speaker John Boehner said that the move "cemented [President Obama's] legacy of lawlessness," while Obama challenged Republicans to "pass a bill" if they disagreed with his executive action.
Fueling the controversy is the fact that Obama, in the past, has said that the rule of law forbade him from taking further legal action.
Though the president's efforts to show compassion to illegal immigrants is generous and though no one would disagree with the act of allowing those brought here as children to stay, executive action is a poor political choice that will cost Obama in the long run, since it was the president who threw in the towel on cooperation, not Republicans. Furthermore, though Obama hinted at fixing the worker visa situation, precious little was offered in details.
In addition to that, a moral question remains on whether or not this is fair to immigrants who came to the country legally and who are fighting to receive H1B's or work authorization through other legal means.
Though the president has a tendency to gloss over these arguments, they are pertinent to the debate and his complete inability to address the issue suggests that this move is purely political and aimed at winning Hispanic support in 2016 in the hopes that the GOP will make the next two years about opposing immigration.
Let's hope that's not the reality, since that would mean that Obama has absolutely no respect for Hispanic voters and seems to think their view of the world revolves around immigration.
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