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Unilateral Immigration Reform

Unilateral Immigration Reform

As members of Congress are heading home for summer recess and their August town halls, the White House grapevine has it that President Obama will circumvent Congress and unilaterally implement immigration reform.

Administration officials are contemplating a range of options that could potentially provide some status to many of the more than 11 million undocumented persons in the country.

Notwithstanding the many, already forgotten reasons why immigration reform has stalled in Congress, the recent influx of 60,000+ undocumented children from Central America has surely put to rest the debate whether our borders are secure. The unpredictable and sudden arrival of these unaccompanied children has changed the immigration debate paradigm and if the President wants immigration reform during his term he's going to have to act on his own.

The President has done so before in 2012, when he granted deferred action to children who were brought to the United States illegally by their parents. The question whether that stunt came within the purview of executive or legislative action is still being debated, but any grant of stay for other undocumented persons will probably be modeled after the 2012 executive order.

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