Rep. Luis Gutierrez (D-Ill.) has it right on immigration reform. President Obama has it only half right.
They agree it is time to flip the script on congressional opponents of legislation to modernize the nation’s failed immigration system. The current system amounts to a mindless set of laws that makes it next to impossible to get the world’s brightest and most talented people into the country, and punishes employers and hardworking people who fill the nation’s need for low-wage workers.
But so far only Gutierrez has a plan for how to stand up and call the bluff of the political bullies blocking immigration reform.
Gutierrez is urging Obama to sign an executive order halting the deportation of all illegal immigrants who are college age. With that one step the president can shift the political dynamics and force the loudmouths to stop their fear-mongering and get serious about reform.
For years, right-wing extremists and bellicose talk show hosts have made it impossible to deal rationally with immigration. The central fact is that there are about 12 million illegal immigrants in the country who are not going anywhere. The U.S. government does not have the manpower, handcuffs or buses to send these illegals back to Mexico, Ireland and China.