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Matthew Kolken on Deportation And Removal

The President Does Have the Power to Limit Deportations

Rating: 2 votes, 5.00 average.
Yesterday, President Obama gave a speech in San Francisco where he was confronted by California Berkeley graduate Ju Hong who pleaded with the President to do something to stem the tide of deportations hallmarking his presidency. Mr. Hong specifically asked: "Mr. President, please use your executive order to halt deportations for all 11.5 undocumented immigrants in this country right now."


The President's response was as follows:

But we’re also a nation of laws. That’s part of our tradition. And so the easy way out is to try to yell and pretend like I can do something by violating our laws. And what I’m proposing is the harder path, which is to use our democratic processes to achieve the same goal that you want to achieve. But it won’t be as easy as just shouting. It requires us lobbying and getting it done. (Applause.)

In sum, the President said that he is bound to enforce our nation's immigration laws, and is powerless to do anything to limit the carnage of his own deportation grinder. It appears that the President has forgotten about the Morton memo, Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, Provisional Unlawful Presence Waivers, and the most recent memorandum providing Parole in Place for Military Families.

So clearly there is precedent that this President has the authority to favorably exercise prosecutorial discretion on behalf of deserving groups of immigrants. Point being, the President was being disingenuous at best, and lying at worst when he said that you would have to "pretend" that he can do something. He clearly can do something. He already has. Four times. Unless of course he is now saying that his previous prosecutorial initiatives were in violation of law. But I'm sure he wasn't saying that. No, he certainly was not.

It is firmly established that the President decidedly has the authority to exercise prosecutorial discretion, and he should exercise that authority to an expanded group of undocumented immigrants. For example deferred action for parents of DACA recipients, and parents of United States citizen children under the age of 21. He could also expand parole in place for immediate relatives of citizens that are statutorily ineligible to adjust status because they entered without inspection. These are just a few examples, but they are a start.

A CNN/ORC poll that was released this week found that a majority of Americans think President Obama is not honest or trustworthy.

His latest appearance isn't helping matters.

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Updated 11-26-2013 at 04:11 PM by MKolken

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