By Carole on Apr 22, 2012
In 2008, Candidate Barack Obama promised that if elected he would address comprehensive immigration reform during his first year in office. Four years later, he has vowed to address reform at the beginning of his second term. But rather than admit this is just another campaign promise on which Mr. Obama failed to deliver, his re-election campaign's senior adviser blames a Republican "reign of terror."
Appearing on CNN's State of the Union, David Axelrod claimed the president's failure was the result of a "monolithic opposition to everything the chief executive wants to do" and that "a lot of Republicans in Congress want to cooperate, know better, but they're in the thralls of this reign of terror from the far right that has dragged the party to the right."
Even if one believes that the will of the American electorate which overwhelmingly chose more conservative representation in the 2010 mid-term contests could be described as a "reign of terror," President Obama chose to break his 2008 promise before those mid-term elections took place when his party controlled both houses of Congress.
Shortly after that first year in office ended, immigration advocates who meet regularly with White House officials said the Obama administration had still not settled on a course of action. At that time, Deepak Bhargava, executive director of one advocacy group said, "The critical ingredient for whether we get immigration reform done this year will be whether the president has the courage to step forward and lead." He didn't then and still hasn't.
In the president's defense, Mr. Axelrod points to the DREAM Act, a proposed bill that would put some young illegal immigrants on a path to citizenship. Of course this is not comprehensive immigration reform. It is merely a form of amnesty that rewards illegal behavior with the rights of citizenship. More importantly to Mr. Obama and Congressional Democrats, it would reward their party with potentially millions of instant voters brought into the "get something for nothing" fold.
Instead of that politically motivated gimmick, Senator Marco Rubio (R-Florida) is leading a Republican effort to draft fair and reasonable legislation. His version of the DREAM Act would allow undocumented youth who were brought to the United States by their parents to receive the equivalent of a non-immigrant visa. But they would still be required to go through the current system to apply for resident status or citizenship.
While Mr. Axelrod claims it is "an implacable group of Republicans in Congress" that are responsible for Mr. Obama's failure; the truth is it's the all or nothing, politics over policy attitude of the president and his Congressional cronies has prevented true immigration reform from coming to pass.
And our Campaigner-in-Chief expects those for whom that reform is a key issue to fall for his con yet again. According to Mr. Axelrod, there will be a renewed opportunity to tackle the issues "when the president wins re-election."
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