In his first press conference since Tuesday’s midterm elections, Speaker John Boehner warned President Obama against moving ahead with executive action on immigration in the coming months, remarking that Obama will “poison the well” and ruin any chance of immigration reform coming out of Congress.
Reporter: Mr. Speaker, as the president moves forward on immigration and acts alone on immigration, is that going to poison the well for any type of cooperation between this new Republican majority and the White House?
Speaker Boehner: You’ve all heard me say starting two years yesterday that our immigration system is broken and needs to be fixed. But I’ve made clear to the president that if he acts unilaterally on his own outside of his authority, he will poison the well and there will be no chance for immigration reform moving in this Congress. It’s as simple as that.
Reporter: Mr. Speaker, you heard the president say he gave you a year waiting for you to be able to deliver on immigration reform and that in this post-election period he’s ready to act and then he would pull back those executive orders if you can have legislation that works. Could that be a catalyst for you to actually get something done?
Boehner: No. I believe that the president continues to act on his own, he’s going to poison the well. When you play with matches, you take the risk of burning yourself. He’s going to burn himself if he continues to go down this path. The American people made it clear election day. They want to get things done and they don’t want the president acting on a unilateral basis.