GOP legislators want President Barack Obama to explain his planned amnesty for illegal immigrants before Americans vote on Nov. 4.
“Rather than attempt to hide these actions from the American people until after the midterm elections, Americans should be given the chance to come to their own conclusions… [so] they can then exercise their constitutional right to petition the federal government and let you know their opinions,” said the Sept. 20 letter from 22 GOP legislators.
Obama announced in June that he would reduce enforcement of immigration law by the end of summer. He made the statement after GOP leaders told him they would not schedule a vote on the unpopular Senate immigration bill. (RELATED: Obama’s Border Meltdown Is Nation’s Top Problem)
GOP legislators rejected the business-backed bill after polls showed the public’s growing opposition.
If approved, the bill would have cut salaries and widened the wealth gap by doubling the annual inflow of immigrants and guest-workers up to nearly 4 million per year. That’s almost level with the 4.3 million Americans who join the workforce each year. (RELATED: CBO Says Immigration Bill Aids Investors, Not Wage Earners)
But White House officials read those polls too, and announced in early September that Obama would delay his executive amnesty until after the election. (RELATED: Obama’s Amnesty Support Tumbles 14 Points Since 2012)
White House officials have not revealed Obama’s draft plans, but have repeatedly suggested that he will use the complex immigration laws to give residency permits and work-permits to more than 4 million illegals.
That action would dramatically boost the 2015 legal inflow of foreign job seekers up to roughly 6 million, when the routine inflow of 1 million legal immigrants and 700,000 foreign workers are included in the total.
That inflow would far outnumber the 2015 supply of roughly 1.3 million native-born non-college Americans.
Obama’s immigration policies are very unpopular among swing-voters, Democrats, working Americans and among many Hispanics. However, they’re backed by many university graduates, business executives and business donors.
Some GOP candidates are hammering their Democratic rivals over immigration. (RELATED: Cotton Hits Sen. Pryor On Amnesty To Win Swing Voters)
Top Republican leaders, however, are downplaying the immigration issue during the 2014 election, partly because business donors want higher immigration.
The new letter jabs at Obama’s effort to hide his draft plans until after the election.
“Regarding actions you are planning that you believe would comply with the Constitution, the least the Administration can do is give Americans the opportunity to see the recommendations that you are considering before you take any actions,” said the letter, which was signed by House Judiciary Committee Chairman Rep. Bob Goodlatte, Rep. Trey Gowdy, Rep. Lamar Smith, Rep. Steve King, Rep. Louie Gohmert and Rep. Jim Jordan.
“Whether it’s now or November, it is never acceptable for the Executive Branch to ignore the Constitution and unilaterally give amnesty to unlawful immigrants,” said the letter.
“We therefore ask that you immediately release to the public all the recommendations that you have received for administrative action – from Secretary Johnson, from Attorney General Holder, and from the interest groups with whom you and your Administration have met. And we ask that you continue to release additional recommendations as you receive them. This could go some way toward repairing the damage to the American political process caused by the secrecy with which your Administration has considered changes to our immigration system.”