Senators Denounce Obama for Threatening ‘Entire Constitutional System’ by ‘Nullifying Immigration Laws’
Tony Lee, Breitbart, April 24, 2014
On Thursday, 22 Republican senators, including even Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), denounced President Barack Obama in a scathing letter for threatening America’s “entire constitutional system” with his immigration “enforcement review” that threatens to “nullify” the nation’s immigration laws.
“Your actions demonstrate an astonishing disregard for the Constitution, the rule of law, and the rights of American citizens and legal residents,” the senators wrote in a letter to Obama. “Our entire constitutional system is threatened when the Executive Branch suspends the law at its whim and our nation’s sovereignty is imperiled when the commander-in-chief refuses to defend the integrity of its borders.”
After intense pressure from pro-amnesty groups who fear that amnesty legislation will not pass this year, Obama’s Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson met with advocacy groups last month to reportedly consider administrative actions–such as granting more forms of amnesty, not deporting illegal immigrants who have not committed “major” crimes, and allowing bond hearings for illegal immigrants–to further erode the nation’s laws. The senators said they had “grave concerns” with these potential actions because they “would represent a near complete abandonment of basic immigration enforcement and discard the rule of law and the notion that the United States has enforceable borders.”
“These policies have operated as an effective repeal of duly enacted federal immigration laws and exceed the bounds of the Executive Branch’s prosecutorial discretion,” the senators wrote. “It is not the province of the Executive to nullify the laws that the people of the United States, through their elected representatives, have chosen to enact. Congress has not passed laws permitting people to illegally enter the country or to ignore their visa expiration dates, so long as they do not have a felony conviction or other severe offense on their record.”
The letter also cites figures from the administration’s Immigration and Customs Enforcement revealing that in 2013, “nearly all individuals removed from the United States were convicted criminals and recent border crossers.” It also mentions a Los Angeles Times report that found that “since 2009, there has been a 40% decline in removals of individuals living and working in the interior of the country.”
Those who signed the letter include: Sens. Chuck Grassley (R-IA), the Ranking Member of the Judiciary Committee, McConnell, Sessions, Richard Shelby (R-AL), Mike Lee (R-UT), Orrin Hatch (R-UT), Johnny Isakson (R-GA), Mike Johanns (R-NE), Jim Inhofe (R-OK), John Boozman (R-AK), David Vitter (R-LA), Jim Risch (R-ID), Mike Crapo (R-ID), Pat Roberts (R-KS), Roy Blunt (R-MO), Thad Cochran (R-MS), Saxby Chambliss (R-GA), Tim Scott (R-SC), Tom Coburn (R-OK), Deb Fischer (R-NE), Ted Cruz (R-TX), John Hoeven (R-ND).
Sens. John Cornyn (R-TX), Jeff Flake (R-AZ) and Lindsey Graham (R-SC) were the GOP senators on the Judiciary Committee who did not sign the letter.