In the Constitution our Founding Fathers gave Congress the authority to make laws and the President authority to enforce laws. The Constitution does not give the President the authority to pick and choose which laws are enforced, but with his reversal in immigration policy last week, that is exactly what President Obama did. Over the last few days, my office has been flooded with emails and phone calls from people who are angry that President Obama has once again circumvented the will of Congress in favor of political gain.
Many people have questioned the timing of President Obama’s revelation on immigration policy. During the 2008 campaign, President Obama said he would reform our nation’s immigration laws during his first year in office. Now four years later we are just five months away from another election and the President has disregarded Congress and said he will no longer enforce current immigration laws. Regardless of personal opinions about the change in policy, every American should be concerned about President Obama chose to ignore the Constitution and legislative process.
It’s not surprising that President Obama would want to divert attention away from where most Americans are focused – jobs and the economy. A few weeks ago the President said the private sector is “doing fine.” Well, I don’t know how often President Obama talks to anyone who actually works in the private sector, but when I talk to small business owners they tell me regulations from Washington are hurting their bottom line. Our nation’s unemployment numbers crept up last month to 8.2%. I don’t blame the President for not wanting to talk about the economy, but that is no reason to ignore the Democratic process.
The wisdom of our Founding Fathers is evident in the powers laid forth in the Constitution. Balancing authority between the President, Congress and Supreme Court ensures that no one branch of government is more powerful than the next. Just last year President Obama said his hands were tied and he could do nothing to change federal immigration policy. Through his actions last week, President Obama has shown that he is willing to forget about the powers named in the Constitution if it means he can score political points.
With his reversal in immigration policy, President Obama really said that he is willing to pick and choose which federal laws he will enforce. No person, not even the President, should be above the law. My constituents and every American deserve a President guided by the Constitution, not election year politics.