President Barack Obama is about to invoke his executive authority to spare nearly 5 million people in the U.S. illegally from deportation. Millions more will remain in limbo. This action is expected to start a constitutional battle in Congress involving a Federal lawsuit to declare his actional unconstitutional and also probable impeachment proceedings against the President. While unlikely to be successful, those proceedings with engulf the attention of the House and Senate making other work impossible. It is unclear as to whether the Supreme Court would consider a case on point.
‘‘The president will come to regret the chapter history writes if he does move forward,’’ declared Sen. Mitch McConnell, the Kentucky Republican who is soon to become the Senate majority leader.
The President’s Order is expected to apply to about 4.1 million parents who are in the country illegally but whose children are U.S. citizens or permanent residents. If the parents have been in the U.S. for at least five years, they could apply for protection from deportation and then for work permits, according to people briefed in advance on the president’s actions.
Obama was also expected to broaden a 2012 directive that deferred deportation for some young immigrants who entered the country illegally. Obama will expand eligibility to people who arrived in the U.S. as minors before 2010, instead of the current cutoff of 2007, and will lift the requirement that applicants be under 31 to be eligible. The expansion is expected to affect about 300,000 people. The probable Constitutional war will likely stall installation of the newly named Attorney General, may impact on budget funding for a number of programs and is likely to grab most headlines for weeks to come. In addition the stock market may be affected and efforts to advance on other legislation of any kind to be halted.
Jeffrey Newman represents whistleblowers