We don’t need no stinkin’ legislative branch of government!
President Obama promised Wednesday to keep up his fight to shield millions of undocumented immigrants from deportation — and vowed to veto any bill declaring his executive action on immigration illegal during a town hall-style sitdown in Florida.
The President said he would do his best to move forward with immigration reform, despite a Texas judge halting the program, during the night forum hosted by Telemundo and MSNBC.
“If you’ve been here for a long time and if you qualify, generally, then during this period, even with legal uncertainty, they should be in a good place,” the President told a cheering crowd.
Of course they cheered—he was talking about them, and their “legal uncertainty”! Is “legally uncertain aliens” the new term for fence jumpers and visa violators? I know “w*tb**k” is offensive to many, but it’s a lot more accurate.
Because, you see, there’s nothing uncertain about their illegality:
After establishing that Texas had standing to sue in federal court, Judge Hanen turned to the lawfulness of the executive action. DAPA was decreed on November 20, 2014, in a series of memorandums, without any opportunity for the public to comment beforehand. Judge Hanen found fatal the government’s failure to comply with the notice-and-comment requirements of the Administrative Procedures Act (APA). But the court went further, finding that DAPA was not an exercise or prosecutorial discretion. Rather, DAPA amounted to a decision to “‘consciously and expressly adopt a general policy’ that is so extreme as to amount to an abdication of its statutory responsibilities.” The president was willfully disregarding the laws of Congress that he did not agree with. Specifically, DAPA “does not simply constitute inadequate enforcement; it is an announced program of non-enforcement of the law that contradicts Congress’ statutory goals.” This policy, Hanen concluded, is unlawful and must be halted.
Rather than enforcing the law, Hanen saw Obama’s actions as making law: The executive is “is not just rewriting the laws; he is creating them from scratch.” This is the role of Congress, not the president. Even if the administration complies with the notice-and-comment process of the APA — unlikely with only 20 months until the next election — such a broad policy of non-enforcement would still run afoul of the Take Care clause.
The decision from Brownsville, on the literal and figurative border between the federal and state governments, is a first step toward restoring the separation of powers and ensuring that the president faithfully executes the laws.
That remains to be seen. It’s a step, but it’s not clear if it’s a step toward anything. If Obama can ignore Congress (rewriting even his “signature achievement” to suit the fancy of the day) and ignore the Constitution, I seriously doubt some sh*tkicking judge from East Bumf*ck, Texas is going to slow him down.
Obama is off the reservation, cheered on by the press, and until the cavalry shows up (in the form of Congress with a spine or the courts with enforcement powers), he’s going to continue to maraud across the landscape. What’s he got to lose?