The Los Angeles Times is reporting that President Obama may postpone his sweeping executive actions on immigration until after the midterm elections. Why? Because Democrats are begging him to:
The two-step plan would bow to the concerns of Democratic lawmakers running in Republican-leaning states who have expressed opposition to Obama’s plans to act unilaterally on the hot-button issue. Some Democratic senators have said he should wait for Congress to pass legislation.
Wait. Why would they want to do that? Aren’t the policies Obama is proposing on immigration wildly popular? That’s what they keep telling us, anyway. “I promise you, the American people don’t want me just standing around twiddling my thumbs,” he said earlier this month. If Democrats would simply stand with the president, then surely voters will reward them. Right?
Congress is working on a legislative solution to the immigrant children crisis on the southern border, which the Obama administration now admits they had anticipated back in January yet still did nothing to stop it.
As the Huffington Post reports, a 2008 anti-trafficking law, which many say has exacerbated the crisis, is at the center of the debate:
The law requires unaccompanied minors from countries other than Canada and Mexico to go through a hearing process to determine if they are eligible to remain in the U.S. through asylum or other relief. But the 57,000 unaccompanied minors who have illegally crossed the U.S.-Mexico border since October have overwhelmed the system, making the 2008 law seem unsustainable to many.
Republicans say the 2008 law must be changed as a condition of approving any funding for the crisis. Most Democrats say it should be left as is.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D., Nev.), for example, who opposes a bipartisan bill that would reform the law, and make it easier for the U.S. to return non-Mexican immigrants to their countries of origin. He has dismissed the legislation, sponsored by Senator John Cornyn (R., Texas) and Representative Henry Cuellar (D., Texas), as another “crazy idea” from House Republicans. Reid has yet to produce legislation of his own to solve the problem.