Apparently, the Obama administration is considering tackling immigration reform on its own. With Congress mired in political infighting, any hope of bipartisan immigration reform has all but died out. Now, President Obama is exploring options for going it alone and expanding protections for illegal immigrants.
Obama is actually on track to remove more immigrants than George W. Bush did during his time in office, though Bush will have sent far more immigrants home than Obama. How can this be possible?
When it comes to deportations there are two ways an immigrant can be kicked out of the country. An immigrant can be returned, meaning he is sent out of the country, but his finger prints are not taken and no real record is made. Or he can be returned, meaning that prints are taken and authorities will know if he is detained in the United States gain.
Lack Of Immigration Pushing Obama
The Obama administration is considering this move after the push for immigration reform itself had essentially died out. Initially, it appeared that the Republican party was ready to spearhead efforts to overhaul immigration, but when it became apparent that Democrats and the GOP would not be able to come to any sort of agreement, the efforts lost all momentum.
With immigration reform essentially off the table, the administration is apparently looking to go its own way once again. Indeed, Obama has vowed to “fix” as many immigration issues on his own as possible. Apparently, the administration is not abandoning its tough stance on recent immigrants, many of whom are children. Instead, the administration will look to grant safe harbor to already established immigrants.
So what actions is the President considering? One option would be to expand the number of work permits granted. This would allow the President to specifically target people who are working and have largely integrated with society. Another possibility would be to extend protection to children under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program.
Yet another possibility would be to protect the parents of American citizens. Any child born on American soil is automatically considered an American citizen, so children born of illegal immigrants are still considered American citizens. Currently, the number of illegal parents to American citizens is estimated to number more than 4 million people.
Sure To Inflame the GOP
Exactly what mechanisms the President could take to reform immigration on his own remains unclear. If the President does push for reform, however, the GOP will almost certainly be enraged. Republicans already accuse Obama of overstepping his Constitutional authority and any efforts to reform immigration on his own will only strengthen calls for impeachment. Any reforms will also likely be challenged in court.