If Obama stops deportations by executive order, GOP leadership has assured the world that Congress will not do anything to stop him.
According to CNS News,
What will congressional Republicans do if President Obama takes executive action to defer deportation for millions more illegal aliens? “Fox News Sunday” host Chris Wallace asked Rep. Steve Scalise (R-La.) that question on Sunday.
“[W]ill you do nothing, will you…cut off funding for the administration, will you consider impeaching the president?”
Scalise said Republicans intend to be a “check and a balance against this administration,” but he also indicated that Republicans will not use their power of the purse to stop the president:
“We’re going to keep the government running at current levels,” Scalise said, referring to a continuing resolution that the House will take up after its August recess to keep the government operating when the fiscal year ends on Sept. 30.
I can understand delaying discussion of impeachment (since they haven’t done anything yet!) until after the 2014 elections. But I don’t understand why Scalise answered the question as he did.
First, even if that was his intention, why not try to keep the administration guessing? Why not say that Republicans in Congress are looking at all options and aren’t prepared to commit to anything yet?
Second, while many are still convinced the government shutdown hurt Republicans, I don’t think this is the same situation at all. If Obama “takes executive action to defer deportation for millions more illegal aliens,” that will be an extremely unpopular decision. Many will believe it is unconstitutional or at least a dereliction of duty. So when Congress defunds that program there is good reason to believe that a majority would cheer. They would not be receptive to the media message that Congress was shutting down the government. They would see that it was Obama’s veto of the budget that was shutting down the government.
Desperate times call for desperate measures. But I’m not proposing this move as an action based on conservative principle. I’m saying that this would genuinely help Congress get the people on its side and get its dismal approval ratings to go up.