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July 23, 2014

The Decider Decides Alone

He acts alone.
Yeah.... with nobody else.
'Cause you know when he acts alone
He prefers to be by himself.

Fortunately for the Multiverse, unilaterally bypassing our democratically elected Congress is *so* not an arrogant power grab by a deranged, power-mad autocrat bent on imposing his imperial will on the voters he promised to represent:

I asked University of Oregon political scientist Daniel Tichenor how extensive Obama's executive powers on immigration are. Tichenor's answer, via e-mail:
In the absence of Congressional action/legislation, the White House has broad authority. This is especially true when presidents are responding to large-scale and uninvited entries into U.S. territory. Truman, Eisenhower, and JFK invoked parole powers to assist European refugees in the context of World War II displacement and later the Cold War. Asylum seekers and other migrants who enter U.S. territory for relief without prior authorization present a more immediate dilemma that our chief executives have considerable authority to address.

Precedents (noted in Tichenor's excellent book on the history of U.S. immigration politics) are plentiful. Harry Truman issued an executive order in 1945 extending relief to tens of thousands of refugees from war-torn Europe. Dwight Eisenhower used a loophole in the McCarran-Walter Act to admit 30,000 Hungarian refugees after the 1956 Soviet invasion of Hungary. When Lyndon Johnson signed a landmark 1965 immigration law, he said he would use his parole power to open the nation to refugees from Fidel Castro's Cuba. (Congress later passed legislation facilitating asylum for Cubans.) Likewise, Richard Nixon used executive power to enable more than 40,000 Czechs on travel permits to stay in the U.S. after the Soviets invaded Czechoslovakia. Additional Czech refugees were admitted from other countries.

None of these actions was on the scale that pro-immigration advocates are urging on Obama. Thousands are not millions. But the same principle of parole power could extend protection to, for example, the roughly 5 million undocumented immigrants in the U.S. with children or spouses who are either citizens or legal residents.

It's all about the principle, people. Please try to stay focused.

The crisis he created forces him to act boldly and unilaterally. Eggs. Omelets.

Update: Oh quit your sniveling. It could be so much worse. He could be out there spending your tax dollars to raise oodles of dark money (you know - the toxic stuff he's forever promising to remove from politics?) for the DNC:

President Obama’s fundraising swing through the Seattle area Tuesday will include a high-priced dinner event benefiting a Democratic super PAC.

The event is at the Hunts Point home of former Costco CEO Jim Sinegal and his wife, Jan, according to a copy of the invitation obtained by The Seattle Times.

The price tag for the event is $25,000 per person, with proceeds going to the Senate Majority PAC, a Democratic group that accepts unlimited donations.

As a candidate, Obama has railed against U.S. Supreme Court rulings that opened up a flood of unfettered political spending through nonprofits and super PACs.

But Obama has come to embrace super PACs on his side of the political divide, especially as he campaigns for Democrats in the 2014 midterms.

For those of you tempted to say this looks a bit hypocritical, just shut yo' moufs:

A letter accompanying the dinner invitation pleads for donors to help avert a Republican takeover of the Senate.

“A mere six seat shift would alter the makeup of the Senate, allowing the GOP to control everything from choice to federal judge confirmations and the Supreme Court. We cannot afford to let this happen, and we need your help,” the letter to donors for the Sinegal event reads.

However, in a feat of legalese probably designed to appease campaign-finance regulators, the letter says Obama would only be appearing as a special guest and is “not soliciting funds for this event or acknowledging your contribution at any point.”

Thank Gaia someone is looking out for the interests of the poor, the near-poor, and the middle class. At $25K a pop.


Posted by Cassandra at July 23, 2014 07:08 AM

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"Eggs. Omelets."

Hot sauce.

Posted by: DL Sly at July 23, 2014 10:24 AM

That is an absurd premise: "In the absence of Congressional action/legislation".

There ARE laws on the books. He is not enforcing them. What this shill is saying is that "abest any laws that Obama does not agree with..."

It is a preposterous argument; it really amounts to no more than propaganda.

It is shameful that a "political science professor" should hold and propagate such warped opinions.

Posted by: hattiper at July 23, 2014 10:35 AM


*You* will not be invited to our next $25,000 a plate DNC fundraiser-in-support-of-income-equality-and-social-justice! :)

Posted by: Barack "The Lightworker" Obama at July 23, 2014 11:00 AM

Of course it all depends on that phrase, "in the absence of action by Congress." It's not "action" if it's not the action we want. In that case, what choice does the President have but to act? The alternative would be a do-nothing Presidency. That's the sort of thing that can lead to a crisis.

Posted by: Texan99 at July 23, 2014 11:14 AM

All is proceeding according to plan.

The plan to turn Texas Democrat (again).

Heads Obama wins, tails you lose. Break the immigration system (such as it is) and make a joke of the law, chaos ensues. Obama wins.
Blanket amnesty for those poor refugees, and you lose. The anchor children are here, their parents are to follow.

Posted by: Don Brouhaha at July 23, 2014 01:19 PM

The anchor children are here, their parents are to follow.

You say this like it's a *bad* thing :p

Voting (D) is a humyn right, just like free birth control (for women but not for men), high speed Internet access, government cell phones, and income equality.

Posted by: Barack "The Lightworker" Obama at July 23, 2014 04:50 PM

The alternative would be a do-nothing Presidency. That's the sort of thing that can lead to a crisis.

Exactly. That's why The American People demand bold, unilateral action.

Posted by: Barack "The Lightworker" Obama at July 23, 2014 04:51 PM

I'm reminded......, of a poem.

Posted by: The Wyzzyrd uv Izz at July 24, 2014 05:59 PM

Fear you may be correct; sarc & cynicism are our only refuge.

Posted by: CAPT Mike at July 26, 2014 01:05 PM