After winning the midterms a month ago with landslide victories, the GOP is already caving on the issue that voters put them in power to stop. While holding symbolic hearings and votes, the Republican leadership seems to hae no actual plan to stop Obama’s edict from going into effect.
The House Judiciary Committee held a hearing, Tuesday, to examine the legality of *Emperor Obama’s royal decree on immigration that would allow 5 million illegal aliens to stay in this country rather than be deported – and to qualify for government benefits.
“President Obama has just announced one of the biggest constitutional power grabs ever by a president. He has declared unilaterally that — by his own estimation — almost 5 million unlawful immigrants will be free from the legal consequences of their lawless actions,” Rep. Bob Goodlatte, R-Va., said.
Republicans pointed out that Obama had previously admitted that taking executive action to grant amnesty was unconstitutional, and ran a video highlighting all the times he admitted he couldn’t change the law.
After Obama executive fiat, he told a Hispanic audience “I just took an action to change the law.”
Jay Sekulow, chief counsel for the American Center for Law and Justice, believes the president’s own words say it all.
“He changed the law. Presidents cannot change the law. You can’t do so constitutionally, you cannot do so under Supreme Court precedent, and you can’t change the law to comport with his preferred public policy,” Sekulow told CBN News.
Democrats on the committee pushed back, saying the president is within his legal rights to use what’s known as “prosecutorial discretion,” – meaning the president, like a prosecutor, can decide which crimes to prosecute, and which laws to enforce.
One of the highlights from the hearing involved Rep. Trey Gowdy excoriating Marielena Hincapie, Executive Director of the Immigration Law Center, for bringing up race as the motive for the GOP’s response to Obama’s lawless decree.
The Republican Party is trying to figure out what their next move should be to block the move, and have few options that don’t involve a government shutdown which they have vowed not to allow.
Republicans met Tuesday to debate one proposal to approve for a full fiscal year 11 of the 12 bills included in the funding package, but only extend for a short period the funding bill for the Department of Homeland Security, which has jurisdiction over immigration policy. That would give the GOP another chance to respond early next year.
Speaker Boehner promised a House vote to undo the president’s executive edict, allowing Repubs to vote for something they know Emperor Obama will veto.
This here will really excite the base:
House Republicans are also eyeing a symbolic resolution of disapproval proposed by Rep. Ted Yoho, R-Fla., that would allow lawmakers to go on record opposing the president’s immigration order, but it would not have the force of law. GOP leaders also have talked about filing a lawsuit against the administration to challenge the constitutionality of Obama’s action.
Slightly more promising is House Homeland Security Chairman Michael McCaul’splan to “take up a border security bill when the next Congress convenes in January.”
The committee passed a bipartisan border security bill in this Congress, but House GOP leaders never brought it to a vote.
McCaul blasted Obama’s November executive action to protect more than 4 million undocumented immigrants from deportation and allow them to apply for work permits. Obama’s action focused on helping the undocumented parents of U.S. citizens and lawful permanent residents. Eligible immigrants will have to pay a $460 application fee to be considered for a work permit.
Meanwhile, incoming Senate Budget Committee chairman Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL) has discovered the Emperor’s plan to open a new immigration facility to process his executive amnesty action in Northern Virginia. That’s the bad news. The really bad news is the federal government has plans to hire 1,000 new immigration employees.
“It has just been discovered today that the Obama Administration is now opening a new USCIS facility in Crystal City, Virginia for the purpose of immediately implementing the President’s imperial immigration decree,” Sessions said in a statement. “They are in the process of hiring 1,000 full-time staff to quickly approve applications for the President’s illegal amnesty, which will provide work permits, photo IDs, Social Security, and Medicare to illegal immigrants—all benefits rejected by Congress. This action will mean that American workers, their sons, their daughters, their parents, will now have to compete directly for jobs, wages, and benefits with millions of illegal immigrants.”
Now 17 states have gotten involved in the fight: Texas, 16 other states sue to stop Obama amnesty:
Seventeen states and governors sued the Homeland Security Department on Wednesday in a bid to halt President Obama’s new deportation amnesty, saying he violated the Constitution and broke federal laws by granting tentative legal status to millions of illegal immigrants.
“This lawsuit is not about immigration. It is about the rule of law, presidential power and the structural limits of the U.S. Constitution,” the governors said in a 75-page complaint, filed in federal district court in Texas.
The governors said they have standing to sue because they and their state taxpayers will be left on the hook for expenses related to schooling, health care and police to handle the extra illegal immigrants who will now have federal permission to stay in the U.S., despite having no permanent lawful status.
And the plaintiffs carefully chose the court where they filed their challenge, selecting Brownsville, Texas, where a judge last year wrote a scathing rebuke of the Homeland Security Department for aiding human smugglers.
Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) on Wednesday called on House Republicans to pass a spending bill that defunds President Barack Obama’s executive action on immigration, and said failure to do so would be a failure of the GOP to live up to its campaign promises to fight Obama’s plan.
“What I’m here urging my fellow Republicans to do is very, very simple,” Cruz said. “Do what you said you would do.”
“Honor your commitments. Answer the question today, the exact same way you would have answered it a month ago when you were campaigning before the voters,” he added.
Cruz spoke after meeting with several House Republicans who are hoping the House can adopt Cruz’s recommendation. Several dozen GOP lawmakers are known to be pushing for language in the 2015 spending bill that blocks the use of any funds to implement Obama’s plan, which could allow millions of illegal immigrants to stay and work in the United States.
On Tuesday, however, House GOP leaders proposed a different plan. House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) called for passage of a separate bill that would nullify Obama’s action, although that bill would not get any vote in the Democratic Senate because it would not be attached to the spending bill.
And Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach is calling on legislators and courts to stop the “lawless executive.” (Emperor Obama.)
During an address before the Patriot Freedom Alliance Tuesday night in Hutchinson, Kansas, Kobach said “Obama did not have the authority to do that, likening him to England’s King George III during the Revolutionary War era.”
“We are in a bona fide constitutional crisis,” Kobach said.
He called on the Kansas Legislature to pass legislation he drafted for two previous sessions intended to deny benefits – except for public education and emergency medical care – to illegal residents.
He said all states should be denying benefits, citing federal law.
“Remove the benefits,” urged Kobach.
The average illegal alien household puts a net annual tax burden of $19,600 on taxpayers, Kobach said.
“Way to go, Mr. President,” he said.
Kobach spoke without notes to well over 100 people gathered in the Atrium Hotel & Conference Center ballroom. He started by explaining why he uses the term “illegal alien.”
He predicted that because of the president’s latest action, “There will be another wave, and it will be bigger.”
As a private attorney, Kobach currently is involved in two immigration-related lawsuits, in Texas and in Pennsylvania. Kobach is hopeful that a Republican-controlled U.S. Senate and House will stand up to Obama.
His hope may be misplaced… Dan Riehl, the Conversation: Pride Goeth: Boehner Begs Hoyer for Dem Votes to Fund Obama Amnesty:
Both House and Senate Republican leadership appears poised to sell-out it’s base to both keep the government open, while giving Barack Obama complete freedom to move forward with his controversial executive orders.
House Democratic whip Steny Hoyer has promised to help Republican leadership overcome rank-and-file opposition to passing a funding bill that does not include language barring President Obama from implementing his executive orders, according to one House appropriator.
House Republican whip Steve Scalise conferred “informally” with his Democratic counterpart earlier this week, Representative Mark Amodei (R., Nev.) tells National Review Online.
“There was earlier talk about, ‘Hey, Steny, are you going to be able to deliver some folks on this?’ and, at least earlier, he was like, ‘Yeah,’” said Amodei, who suggested that Republicans could muster 80 percent of the 218 votes needed to pass the bill. “It was not a discussion that was white-knuckled. Maybe it’s getting to white-knuckle the closer we get, but, I hope not.”
Krauthammer responds to Rush Limbaugh’s criticism about the herd of RINOs enabling the lawless president: They are only stating the obvious.
*Josh Earnest says that Obama views the “Emperor” charge as a badge of honor. If it pleases him, I’m happy to oblige.