President Obama has mocked critics of his decision to enact some facets of immigration reform through the use of his executive authority by telling Republicans in the House of Representatives that if they do not like his choosing to enact reform in this way, the easy way to stop him is to do it themselves.
On Thursday Obama made the announcement that he was taking action to ease the fear of being deported for millions of undocumented immigrants in the United States, enacting measures that include enabling around 4.4 million people who are parents of those who have US citizenship or are legal residents and have lived in the country for over five years to get temporary legal permission to stay and work. During an ABC This Week interview recorded on Friday, the president was asked about the assertion made by John Boehner ‒ the speaker of the House of Representatives ‒ that he was behaving more like an emperor by tackling the issue himself. “Well, my response is pass a bill,” Obama said bluntly. “Congress has a responsibility to deal with these issues and there are some things that I can’t do on my own.”
Boehner has not indicated any plans to address immigration reform in the remainder of 2014 and Republicans are torn over what to do about Obama’s decision, with some advocating tactics that could lead to yet another government shutdown. Democratic senator Bob Menendez believes that the House should stop wasting time trying to stop Obama and instead pass last year’s Senate immigration reform bill.