Obama: If Republicans Want Immigration Reform, ‘Nobody Is Stopping Them’

Monica Sanchez | November 10, 2014
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On CBS’s Face the Nation on Sunday, President Barack Obama discussed his impending executive action to deal with the country’s ongoing immigration issues before the new Republican-dominated Congress gets sworn in. He expressed that, in the meantime, if Republicans want to pass a bill for immigration reform, he would be all for it.

“If, in fact, it’s true that they want to pass a bill [on immigration], they’ve got good ideas, nobody’s stopping them.”

Mr. Obama mentioned how “time hasn’t run out” for Congress to pass an effective bill, which would in effect supersede his executive action on the issue.

“Actually, their time hasn’t run out. I’m going to do what I can through executive action. It’s not going to be everything that needs to get done. And it will take time to put that in place. And, in the interim, the minute they pass a bill that addresses the problems of immigration reform, I will sign it, and it supersedes whatever actions I take, and I’m encouraging them to do so.”

The President continued, “If, in fact, a bill gets passed, nobody is going to be happier than me to sign it…”

Congressmen such as House Speaker John A. Boehner (R-OH), Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), and Sen. John Barrasso (R-WY) have warned Obama against acting unilaterally on this hot button issue.

Boehner said “that using executive action would ‘poison the well’ and McConnell, who will likely be the Senate majority leader next year, compared it to waving a flag in front of a bull,” reported Fox News.

On Fox News Sunday, Sen. John Barrasso (R-WY) discussed how unilateral executive action would negatively impact cooperation between parties in Congress – not just on immigration but “on every issue.”

“I believe it will hurt cooperation on every issue. I think it would be like the president pulling the pin out of a hand grenade and throwing it in as we are trying to actually work together. I am hoping that cooler heads at the White House can prevail.”

The question is whether Obama should wait until Congress passes immigration reform legislation to address such a profoundly broken system. Pulling the trigger beforehand by acting on his own could very well exacerbate the issue.  

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