Obama Flashback: ‘I Would Be Ignoring the Law’ if I Unilaterally Enacted Amnesty

‘If we start broadening that, then essentially, I would be ignoring the law in a way that I think would be very difficult to defend legally’

From a September 17, 2013 Univision interview:

DIAZ-BALART: “Last time we spoke you said that you are not a king, you are president, and there are only certain things you can do unilaterally. As times goes on thousand deportations on average a day. People are wondering, our Tweeter feeds, Facebook feeds, that’s the question everybody asks: Won’t you at least consider unilaterally freezing the deportation of the parents of Deferred Action kids?”

OBAMA: "Here’s the problem that I have, Jose, and I’ve said this consistently. My job in the executive branch supposed to carry out the laws that are passed. Congress has said here is the law when it comes to those who are undocumented and they allocated the whole bunch of money for enforcement. And what I have been able to do make a legal argument that I think is absolutely right, which is, that given the resources we have we can’t do everything that Congress has asked us to do. What we can do is then carve out the DREAM Act folks, saying young people who have basically grown up here are Americans that we should welcome. We’re not going to have them operate under a cloud, under a shadow. But if we start broadening that, then essentially, I would be ignoring the law in a way that I think would be very difficult to defend legally. So that’s not an option.

"I do get a little worried that advocates of immigration reform start losing heart and immediately thinking, ‘Well somehow there’s an out here. If Congress doesn’t act, we’ll just have the President sign something and that will take care of it, we won’t have to worry about it.’ What I’ve said is  that there’s a path to get this done and that’s through Congress. And right now, everybody should be focused on making sure that that bill, that’s already passed out the Senate, hits the floor of the House of Representatives. It’s not as if the votes aren’t there, the votes are there. The only thing that’s preventing it is that Speaker Boehner has decided that he doesn’t want to call it right now.”

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