President Obama today said that he received proposals from Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson and Attorney General Eric Holder for immigration actions that can be taken without Congress’ approval. He had previously vowed to take action before the end of summer, but today only said "My expectation is that fairly soon, I'll be considering what the next steps are."
Obama said he would move resources to better address the alien surge of child migrants and discussed some goals not previously mentioned. He said unless Congress overhauls the immigration system, he would increase border security, upgrade how border crossers are processed, and give illegal aliens long residing in the United States a means to become legal residents, pay taxes, pay a fine and learn English. He also said he would find “a way to encourage legal immigration.”
"I want to be very clear: My intention is, in the absence of...action by Congress, I'm going to do what I can do within the legal constraints of my office, because it's the right thing to do for the country," Obama said.
According to the latest Investors Business Daily/TIPP poll, just 22 percent of the public say Obama should "sidestep Congress and act on his own using executive orders" while 73 percent say Obama should work with Congress on immigration reform. Even among Democrats, only 39 percent say Obama should act unilaterally.