Luis Gutierrez: Obama can ‘heal’ undocumented
By: Kendall Breitman
July 1, 2014 08:24 AM EDT
Rep. Luis Gutiérrez said Tuesday that President Barack Obama has the power to “heal” undocumented immigrants.
“If [Republicans] want to come back and discuss [reform], fine,” the Illinois Democrat said on MSNBC. “But in the interim period, I believe the president of the United States has already in statute, in the law, the ability to heal and put in a safe harbor millions of undocumented immigrants while the Congress of the United States finally decides it’s going to take action.”
Obama’s announcement on Monday that he plans to take administrative actions to address problems with the country’s immigration policies came as a flood of unaccompanied children are crossing the southern border into the United States, causing immigration reform backers to press the president for action.
(Also on POLITICO: Obama to take action on immigration)
“I take executive action only when we have a serious problem, a serious issue and Congress chooses to do nothing,” Obama said Monday in the Rose Garden. “And in this situation, the failure of House Republicans to pass a darn bill is bad for our economy.”
Gutiérrez said he does not have much optimism when it comes to comprehensive reform coming out of Congress. Instead, he said that he hopes the steps from Obama will start to get the ball rolling on immigration policies.
(Also on POLITICO: Obama’s immigration pivot)
“Just as Republicans have said, ‘No, no, no,’ I expect the president to be broad, expansive and generous in the use of his prosecutorial discretion,” Gutiérrez said. http://www.politico.com/story/2014/07/luis-gutierrez-obama-undocumented-immigrants-heal-108473.html