The Spectacle Blog

Obama’s Immigration Flip-Flop

By on 6.18.12 | 12:43PM

Some more thoughts on the president's immigration ploy. I write about Obama "evolving" on this issue.

“Our nation’s immigration laws must be enforced in a firm and sensible manner,” Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano generously allowed. “But they are not designed to be blindly enforced without consideration given to the individual circumstances of each case.” True. But neither should prosecutorial discretion be extended to up to 1 million people in an effort to effect policy changes that lack congressional support.

Critics point out that this decision contradicts Obama’s previous denials that he would circumvent Congress on immigration, making it another marriage-like flip-flop. At a Univision townhall meeting, Obama reminded his audience that there are three branches of the federal government, concluding, “There are enough laws on the books by Congress that are very clear in terms of how we have to enforce our immigration system that for me to simply through executive order ignore those congressional mandates would not conform with my appropriate role as president.”

Obama similarly disappointed a restive crowd at the National Council of La Raza when he said “some people want me to bypass Congress and change the laws on my own” but “that’s not how our system works.”

But I've also noted, as much as this is a departure from Obama's past rhetoric it is consistent with his actual record.

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