CNN Legal Analyst Jeffrey Toobin was skeptical of Obama’s decision to pursue executive action to reform immigration, saying “He is treading, potentially, on treacherous legal grounds here.”
Obama explained his decision Monday by declaring, “I take executive action only when we have a serious problem, a serious issue, and Congress chooses to do nothing.”
“Well,” Toobin reacted, “that’s not necessarily the way the Constitution set it up. He can only act when Article 2 of the Constitution says the president has the authority. He can’t allocate money.”
Toobin noted that he can allocate money that has been appropriate by Congress, and that he has the authority to tell the Department of Homeland Security to transfer money to the border.
“But once you start new initiatives,” Toobin warned, “it gets a little more dicey legally.”