Campaign Updates

Congressman Byrne blasts Obama’s intention to use executive orders to reform immigration

Posted on July 1st, 2014

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By Brendan Kirby

U.S. Rep. Bradley Byrne on Tuesday blasted President Barrack Obama’s announcement that he would use his executive powers to bypass Congress on immigration reform.

“President Obama just doesn’t seem to get it. Our founders clearly reserved the power to establish immigration laws to Congress, not the president,” Byrne said in a prepared statement. “I am not even convinced the president actually wants immigration reform, but rather an issue to use on the campaign trail.”

Obama on Monday offered no specifics but announced that he would issue executive orders by the end of the summer to change U.S. immigration law. For months, reform advocates have hoped Republicans who control the House of Representatives would agree to provide a path to citizenship for foreigners who entered the country without permission. But House leaders have made it clear that they will not bring the issue before the House this year.

“The failure of House Republicans to pass a darn bill is bad for our security, bad for our economy, and it’s bad for our future,” Obama said. “Drop the excuses.”

But Byrne, R-Fairhope, suggested that Obama improperly is usurping the role of Congress.

“If President Obama was serious, he would start by enforcing the laws currently in place and work to build trust with those of us in the House,” Byrne stated. “The president’s refusal to enforce current law and unilateral actions to the contrary, make any discussion about reform nearly impossible”

Byrne indicated that the president cannot unilaterally change the law simply because he disagrees with it.

“If unilateral action was possible, don’t you think House Republicans would have repealed ObamacCare, replaced the harmful sequestration defense cuts, and halted the Environmental Protection Agency’s war on coal?” he stated. “But that is not how our government works. Our nation was founded on clearly defined powers outlined in the Constitution, and I will continue to stand up against efforts which erode that separation of powers.”