President Obama will “use as much authority as he can muster within the confines of the law” to solve the nation’s immigration problems, White House press secretary Josh Earnest told reporters on Friday. Although he offered no timetable for the potential executive actions, Earnest said the president feels compelled to act because the House has blocked similar legislation.
The president’s plans will proceed even as he’s “hoping House Republicans will come to their senses at some point and pass a piece of legislation that will be even more impactful,” Earnest said during the daily briefing. “The president is determined as ever to take that kind of action on his own simply because House Republicans have blocked the ability of Congress to try and solve this problem.”
Reports have hinted that the president’s action may grant legal status to as many as 6 million immigrants currently in the country illegally, and some Democratic lawmakers have expressed excitement over the prospect. The president’s actions were expected as early as next week, but now the White House has hinted he may wait until after the November midterms to avoid jeopardizing vulnerable Democrats running for reelection.