President Barack Obama’s sweeping executive order on immigration that took effect on Wednesday is “the hallmark of graft,” Dan Stein, president of the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR), tells Newsmax.TV in an exclusive interview.
“The reason why it’s so pernicious is that what he did he did six months before an election,” Stein tells Newsmax. “He extended this work authorization, flooding the labor market with millions more people looking for jobs without any authority – and he did so for a two-year period essentially saying, ‘You better re-elect me because the next administration might not extend the status.’
Watch the exclusive interview here.
“This is the hallmark of graft, of using the most precious thing the American people have to offer – residency in the United States – as a partisan political tool to try to shore up a re-election campaign.”
The executive order, announced in June, grants two-year deportation deferrals, work permits, and other benefits such as a driver’s license and Social Security numbers to illegals brought to the United States as children.
The order bypassed a Congress that failed to pass the DREAM Act last year and was a major olive branch to Hispanic voters after the administration deported 1.2 million illegals in the last three years.
In many cities throughout the country, thousands of young illegals turned out on Wednesday to complete applications – among the 1.2 million the Migration Policy Institute estimates are eligible to apply now.
Another 500,000 will reach the minimum eligibility age of 15 in coming years. The largest number of eligible applicants are in California, Florida, New York, and Texas.
The order, however, does not give legal status or a path to citizenship, and those applying must be in school, or high school graduates, or have served honorably in the military. Those with criminal records will be rejected.
“And, not surprisingly,” after the order became law, Stein said, the White House “immediately turned around and started running Spanish-language ads on Spanish-language television touting this amnesty that he had passed.
“Now, this is not legal status,” he added. “This is basically some created-out-of-whole-cloth document that says, ‘We’re not going to take action on your case. Meanwhile, here’s a work authorization.”
Congress must reassert its authority over U.S. immigration policy, Stein said.
“If you allow the Executive Branch, a president, to use immigration policy for his own party objective and his own partisan objective, there’s no end in sight to the slippery slope.
“This is going to cost taxpayers billions and billions of dollars – and the Congress and the American people have had no voice in the process,” he said. “What’s really tough about this is that twice Congress has rejected the so-called DREAM Act.
“The American people are less concerned about deferred action for illegal aliens than they are the deferred American dream for young Americans struggling to find a job.”
On Wednesday, GOP Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer signed an order denying driver’s licenses and public benefits to young undocumented immigrants who qualify to stay in the U.S. under the new effort, known as the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program. Some legal experts say Brewer’s move could end up in court, NBC News reports.
“Clearly the governor’s action is designed to highlight the legal absurdity of the situation because the citizens of Arizona, as all states, do have the right to expect the federal government to carry out immigration laws, protect the state, protect its fiscal solvency – and, ultimately, it’s a question of accountability,” Stein said.
“Gov. Brewer, you’ve got to salute her leadership in this area. She’s highlighting the absurdity of what the administration has done. And what the administration has done will set off litigation for years.”
“They don’t have the right to just ignore the law and let in millions and millions of people,” Stein added, regarding the Obama administration, “but they seem to think that they do – and they seem to think that states are powerless to do anything to stop it except write a blank check.”
Here is, perhaps, presumptive Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney’s best opportunity, Stein said. “The next administration is going to have to address this directly.
“We have a crisis of confidence in the federal government’s ability to control immigration. This is taking place against the backdrop of the worst recovery since the depression – and nobody can figure out what our economic destiny is.
“To lose control of the administrative process of immigration control is something that is of paramount national importance, and it must be addressed by the next president. If I were running for president I would say, ‘If elected, I will enforce the immigration laws of the United States.’ ”
And, should Obama win the White House for another four years on Nov. 6, sees nothing more than a “state-by-state bankruptcy,” he said.
“He took this action unilaterally, without any hearings on the impact on education, the job market, housing, college availability. The administration is saying they should be eligible for in-state tuition and Pell grants – and all these other things at a time when our young people are having a hard time finding spots in college and affording it.
“In the end, we’re skidding down the slope to state-by-state bankruptcy,” Stein continued. “You can’t have an effective society, national healthcare or anything else without perimeter control. No nation state in recorded human history has been able to survive without effective perimeter control. That’s no different then; it’s no different now. So our future hangs in the balance.”
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