Tags: Immigration | Steve Malzberg Show | Alberto Gonzalez | immigration | Obama | executive order

Alberto Gonzales: Executive Order Is the 'Wrong' Thing to Do

By    |   Tuesday, 18 Nov 2014 06:45 PM

President Barack Obama should engage Congress in hammering out an immigration deal instead of just issuing his own executive order, says Alberto Gonzales, former U.S. attorney general under President George W. Bush.

"Even assuming that in fact he has the authority I don't think it's the right thing to do at this juncture," Gonzales said Tuesday on "The Steve Malzberg Show" on Newsmax TV.

"It's a temporary solution to a very serious problem. It makes it more difficult to get comprehensive immigration reform in the future going forward."

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Gonzales, now the dean of Belmont University College of Law, said there is a lot more at stake here than simply immigration reform.

"This is really a dispute between the elected branches of government about who gets to decide what immigration policy is and every member of Congress should be very interested in that discussion, particularly people that care about separation of powers," he said.

"So for those reasons, the president should reengage with the Congress, with the American people, and explain why this should be done through the Congress and he ought to give Congress a reasonable period of time to get something done.

"After all, we are going to have the leadership in the Senate and we'll have new members in both houses. That's the best way to solve a very serious issue that affects both our economy and our national security."

Just how legal it would be for Obama to use executive order on immigration remains murky, according to Gonzales.

"On the one hand you do have Article 2, Section 3 of the Constitution which requires the president to take care that the laws are faithfully executed and, from my perspective, I don't think he can choose to enforce a law he doesn't like simply as a matter of policy. He has no authority to suspend or amend or repeal a law," Gonzales said.

"But, on the other hand you do have the courts and the Congress acknowledge that the president does have discretion and the way the laws are enforced based upon budget constraints and policy priorities that are not otherwise inconsistent with congressional intent.

"So there's a lot of discretion there for the president and if a member of Congress wants to go to court … he's going to have to show that the president has abused his discretion and … that they have standing to assert their claim in court and those are not insubstantial hurdles."

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President Barack Obama should engage Congress in hammering out an immigration deal instead of just issuing his own executive order, says Alberto Gonzales, former U.S. attorney general under President George W. Bush. Even assuming that in fact he has the authority I don't...
Alberto Gonzalez, immigration, Obama, executive order
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2014-45-18
Tuesday, 18 Nov 2014 06:45 PM
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