Is executive action on immigration reform just around the corner?


Another day, another threat of executive action[1] from the Obama Administration. According to House Democrats, Obama’s Secretary at Homeland Security, Jeh Johnson, has assured lawmakers that he is working on “fixes” to current immigration law that could surface in the next few weeks.

Here’s what Rep. Jared Polis (D-CO) said on a conference call this week: “He gave us a time frame, and there are some fixes that are going to be coming sooner, which is in the next few weeks. And then there are some broader policy changes that will be coming later this year.”

Johnson apparently has been getting pressure from immigration reform advocate groups, as well as the Congressional Hispanic Caucus (CHC), who argue that Obama has departed more illegal immigrants than any other president. The CHC even drafted a memo for Johnson, outlining what kind of reforms they’d like to see. Suggestions include allowing family members living outside the country, to reunite with relatives in the U.S., and apply for a green card – even if they’ve already been deported.

Aside from the implicit policy questions that come with immigration reform, is this really something Democrats believe should be done without Congressional action? The lawlessness in Washington D.C. is getting out of hand. Nowhere in the Constitution does it say that one president has the authority to sidestep Congress and decree wide-sweeping policy reforms that have drastic implications.

One of the enormous benefits of living in a free country is that no one is above the rule of law. That applies even to the President of the United States. He may not like that he has to work with a divided Congress. He may not like that the majority in the House represents conservative-thinking, liberty-loving, small government Americans. That doesn’t mean he can ignore them.