Two powerful Republican committee chairmen warned President Obama in a letter Wednesday that they would use every tool at their disposal to stop his executive actions on immigration.
House Homeland Security Committee Chairman Michael McCaul (R-Texas) and House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob GoodlatteRobert (Bob) William GoodlatteThe job of shielding journalists is not finished Bottom line No documents? Hoping for legalization? Be wary of Joe Biden MORE (R-Va.) added to the chorus of GOP criticism against the president, calling an executive order “ill advised” and urging Obama to work with Congress to find a compromise.
“Let’s secure the border, enforce our immigration laws in the interior of the United States, and build a broad consensus for immigration reform,” they wrote.
“Otherwise, as the chairmen of the committees with oversight over border security and our nation’s immigration laws, we will be forced to use the tools afforded to Congress by the Constitution to stop your administration from successfully carrying out your plan.”
The White House on Wednesday said the president will announce his “commonsense steps” on immigration in a prime-time address on Thursday evening.
Democrats have largely praised the president for acting unilaterally, noting that the House has not acted in the more than 16 months since the Senate passed its immigration bill with support from 14 Republicans.
But Republican lawmakers say Obama is flouting the Constitution and rejecting the will of voters, who just handed Democrats a resounding loss in the midterm elections.
McCaul and Goodlatte called Obama’s order a “slap in the face to the American people and the Constitution.”
A new poll released Wednesday from NBC News and The Wall Street Journal found that 48 percent of adults didn’t want the president to take executive action, while 38 percent supported the move.
McCaul and Goodlatte said the executive order would draw more undocumented immigrants into America, specifically mentioning the influx of border crossings after the president allowed people brought to America as children to stay in the country without fear of deportation.
“Executive action will simply perpetuate and exacerbate a cycle of unlawful entry into the United States,” they wrote.
“It has been true under your administration’s policy to not follow the immigration laws already on the books.”