Petty Politics in the House of Representatives

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 4, 2014

CONTACT
Adela de la Torre, 213-400-7822, delatorre@nilc.org

Petty Politics in the House of Representatives

Yoho vote shows utter disregard for practical solutions to repair immigration system

WASHINGTON — In a move that allowed the House of Representatives to continue venting its dislike for President Obama and his policies, lawmakers voted along party lines Thursday on a bill that attempts to limit the president’s well-founded executive authority over immigration.

The vote against the president’s policy to allow parents of U.S. citizen children and other immigrants who meet certain requirements to apply for temporary deportation relief and work authorization was the latest in a series of recent actions intended to strip the president of his legal authority over immigration enforcement. This legal authority is based on established regulations, court decisions, and historical precedent.

Earlier this week, the House Judiciary Committee used a hearing to make the claim that the president’s action exceeded his executive authority. Marielena Hincapié, executive director of the National Immigration Law Center, was the only hearing witness who detailed the legal and historic precedents for the president’s action, and she issued the following statement after today’s House vote:

“Unable to legislate on pragmatic immigration reform, the House has resorted to tearing apart legal and moral policy solutions proposed by President Obama that are a temporary, first step toward much-needed immigration reform.

“Congress’s vote today is a rejection of the will of all Americans for Congress to fix our dysfunctional immigration system in a way that protects families, sustains our economic growth, and upholds our nation’s moral values.

“During the House Judiciary Committee hearing this week, I testified to the facts: Under the law, the president has a duty to enforce the laws and the authority to decide how to do so. On immigration, he has done just that, removing the threat of deportation for millions of aspiring citizens and their families.

“Our immigration system is broken. Rather than continuing to lob misguided attacks on the president’s recent immigration initiative, we recommend that House members do what they were hired to do: legislate. Bring immigration reform up for a vote, and give the American people the permanent solution they have supported for years.”

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