Caught unawares, the Republican reaction to today's immigration policy announcement has been "it is illegal and unconstitutional because stuff".
"This is no longer a debate about immigration policy. The debate is now about the Constitution and the Rule of Law," the Iowa congressman said in a statement. "I am preparing to bring suit against the President and ask for a court to enjoin him from implementing his unconstitutional and unlawful policy."John Yoo, R-Torture:
President Obama’s claim that he can refuse to deport 800,000 aliens here in the country illegally illustrates the unprecedented stretching of the Constitution and the rule of law. He is laying claim to presidential power that goes even beyond that claimed by the Bush administration, in which I served.Rep. Paul Gosar, R-Arizona
"Just when the American public is starting to think President Obama cannot go any further with his unconstitutional executive overreach--he reaches a new low. Obama has turned the Presidency into a monarchy. Only Congress is constitutionally authorized to change federal immigration law. The president's directive is unconstitutional. Obama, his Cabinet, and his czars have shown from day one they believe they are above the law. They are not. The president cannot decree what laws will be enforced and what will be ignored."I could do more, but why?
But then a voice of sanity breaks through. And it comes from a Republican politician from Utah! Join me below orange hole in the border fence to read about it.
The man in question is Mark Shurtleff, Utah's Republican, Conservative, romney-suppoting Attorney General. As reported by Greg Sargent:
“This is clearly within the president’s power,” Shurtleff said. “I was pleased when the president announced it.”Good on you, Mark Shurtleff.
“Law enforcement makes decisions based on the resources available to them — until Congress acts, we’ll be left with too many people to deport,” Shurtleff said. “The administration is saying, `Here’s a group we could be spending our resources going after, but why? They’re Americans, they see themselves as Americans, they love this country.""
Shurtleff added that the decision, by allowing children brought here illegally to go to school and work, could encourage them to stay out of gangs — which he called a “conservative” goal.
Last year the ICE deported around 400,000 immigrants, for a cost of $5 Billion. So long as its budget remains the same, the number of deportations will remain the same.
So what do the Republicans want?
Will they raise taxes or increase the deficit to increase ICE's budget? No, and no.
So, do they want ICE to deport the first random 400,000 undocumented immigrants it bumps into?
Or do they want ICE to deport undocumented immigrants who are involved in non-immigration-related criminal activity?
Shurtleff gets it: law enforcement makes decisions based on the resources available to it. And deporting kids who grew up here and are fully integrated into our society makes no sense whatsoever.
His words should be quoted to every hyperventilating wing-nut in America.