President Obama’s Immigration Initiative

Though I hope to revisit this subject later on, let me share a few (somewhat repetitive) posts I’ve written in this space on the DREAM Act concept: (1) from 2010, a reaction to Michael Gerson’s support for DREAM that advances a different moral framework for thinking about the humanitarian dimension of U.S. immigration policy; (2) a post addressing other pro-DREAM arguments; (3) thoughts on the idea of authorized immigration as a fixed pie; and (4) a reply to critics.

Basically, the Obama administration is confirming my basic beliefs about its motivations, its ideological orientation, and its beliefs regarding the rule of law and the appropriate bounds of political conflict. 

A few other links that might be of interest:

Elise Foley of the Huffington Post explains the new policy in detail

Peter Wallsten and William Branigin of the Washington Post also offer a thorough account that adds useful context, e.g.:

The issue has been a major point of contention between immigration advocates and Obama. Advocates have spent months urging the president to take executive action to spare many young illegal immigrants from deportation, and until now Obama has insisted that he did not have the authority to do so.

It seems that the president has now found the authority to do so. It will be interesting to hear how his opinion on this sensitive question evolved.

And Josh Kraushaar kindly passed along a brilliant Washington Post article, also by Wallsten, that describes how the president has struggled to accommodate the demands of advocates of the DREAM Act and same-sex marriage, among other activists. It is an intelligent portrait of a president who has strong left-of-center convictions, yet who has had a difficult time reconciling them with various political and institutional imperatives. 

Part of me wonders if President Obama is preparing the groundwork for a 2016 presidential campaign in the event he is defeated in his bid for reelection. What is certainly true is that the president is continuing to burnish his post-presidential reputation. 

Reihan Salam — Reihan Salam is executive editor of National Review and a National Review Institute policy fellow.

Most Popular

Politics & Policy

Broward’s Cowards

It is impossible to imagine circumstances under which Broward County sheriff Scott Israel could attempt to perform his duties with the confidence of the public. He should resign immediately, and if, as he promises, he refuses to go quietly, then he should be shown the door by the people he professes to ... Read More

Courage: The Greatest of Virtues

EDITOR’S NOTE: The following is Jonah Goldberg’s weekly “news”letter, the G-File. Subscribe here to get the G-File delivered to your inbox on Fridays. Dear Reader (Or Listener), As the reporter assigned the job of writing the article about all of Sidney Blumenthal’s friends and supporters told his ... Read More

My American Dream

This morning, at 8 a.m., I did something I’ve wanted to do for as long as I can remember: I became an American. I first applied for a visa in early 2011, and since then I have slowly worked my way through the system — first as a visa-holder, then as a permanent resident (green card), and, finally, as a ... Read More
Politics & Policy

CNN’s Shameful Town Hall

CNN recently hosted an anti-gun town hall featuring a number of grieving children and parents from Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., who aimed their ire at the National Rifle Association, politicians peripherally associated with the NRA, and anyone who didn’t say exactly what they wanted to hear. ... Read More

The Gun-Control Debate Could Break America

Last night, the nation witnessed what looked a lot like an extended version of the famous “two minutes hate” from George Orwell’s novel 1984. During a CNN town hall on gun control, a furious crowd of Americans jeered at two conservatives, Marco Rubio and Dana Loesch, who stood in defense of the Second ... Read More