The interesting part of all this isn’t the timing or the idea. Yes, it’s the right thing to do. Yes, it’s politically timed. Blah, blah, blah. Boring.

The interesting part about this is he did this on his own. No bills, no debate. The below simply won’t happen anymore…at least if Obama gets reelected.

From WSJ:

WASHINGTON—The Obama administration said it wouldn’t deport many younger illegal immigrants who came to the U.S. as children, a major shift in the middle of an election season where the Hispanic vote could be pivotal.

The new rules, sidestepping Congress after years of stalemate over an immigration overhaul, came in response to frequent pleas by Hispanic and other groups for more lenient treatment of people who came to the U.S. illegally as youngsters. The move quickly drew criticism from those who want a tougher stance on illegal immigration and oppose what they call amnesty.

The new rules apply to people who came to the U.S. under the age of 16, haven’t committed a major crime and are currently under 30. They will be eligible for a two-year period of “deferred action,” where they could apply for work permits and wouldn’t be deported.

Okay, there’s one other interesting part about this: Marco Rubio.

He was putting together something very similar, but wanted to do it legislatively…

Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida, a Republican who is the son of Cuban immigrants, said the president should have worked through Congress rather than taking steps on his own. Mr. Rubio said the announcement “will be welcome news” for “kids who are undocumented through no fault of their own” but called it a “short-term answer to a long-term problem.”

One last thought…this might have been a shot across Romney’s bow that Rubio won’t have as much value as a Veep pick? Thoughts?

Here’s the video…

  • Fuzzy Face

    John Yoo points out a problem:

    “The Justice Department must choose priorities and prosecute cases that are the most important, have the greatest impact, deter the most, and so on. But prosecutorial discretion is not being used in good faith here: A president cannot claim discretion honestly to say that he will not enforce an entire law — especially where, as here, the executive branch is enforcing the rest of immigration law.

    Imagine the precedent this claim would create. President Romney could lower tax rates simply by saying he will not use enforcement resources to prosecute anyone who refuses to pay capital-gains tax. He could repeal Obamacare simply by refusing to fine or prosecute anyone who violates it.

    So what we have here is a president who is refusing to carry out federal law simply because he disagrees with Congress’s policy choices.”

  • mdgeorge

    I’m conflicted about FF’s point. Yoo’s argument seems reasonable to me (although it’s pretty rich coming from him). On the other hand, it seems clear to me that the systems (congress and immigration) are so broken right now that something should be done, and I think I still support the president’s action. I know, I know… this is the road to tyranny. It was also the road to the New Deal and out of the great depression. I guess right now I feel like we’re more on the failing government side of the pendulum (so that unilateral action to break the logjam is slightly preferable) than on the overreach of government side (so that strict adherence to the rules is slightly preferable).