Obama refuses to act unilaterally on immigration

President_George_W._Bush_and_Barack_Obama_meet_in_Oval_OfficeMonday saw a speech being given by President Barack Obama that had the intention of pressurizing Congress into passing immigration reform interrupted by a heckler who was upset with the number of undocumented immigrants who are still being deported from the United States.

As Obama came toward the end of his speech about immigration reform while at the Betty Ong Chinese Recreation Center, he started to be shouted over by a young man who was standing on the riser just behind the President.  “Mr. President, please use your executive order to halt deportations for all 11.5 million undocumented immigrants in this country right now,” the young man shouted, keeping going even as Obama attempted to continue his speech.

A number of other people then also began chanting “Stop deportation.”  Although audience members have heckled the President at speeches on some previous occasions, it is odd for such interruptions to come from people who have been allowed to stand behind him as he talks.  Obama waved off event organizers who were trying to have the young man removed from the stand, saying that he respected the passion the man and his fellows but that he cannot solve problems without Congress passing laws.

“The easy way out is to try to yell and pretend like I can do something by violating our laws,” Obama noted.  “And what I’m proposing is taking the harder path and using our democratic processes to achieve the same goal you want to achieve.”