The Corner

Yes, Obama Killed the DREAM Act

Liberals don’t seem to get why the Obama administration’s semi-permanent, semi-legal, semi-coherent fiat mandating “prosecutorial discretion” (don’t mind the contradiction in terms) toward certain younger illegals effectively killed any chance for passing a version of the DREAM Act that could garner broad GOP support.

It’s simple. On Friday, retiring Sen. Jon Kyl (R., Ariz.) told National Review editors that he expected the version of DREAM he cosponsored with Marco Rubio (R., Fla.) to be greeted with “tolerance by our most conservative friends, and enthusiasm from the rest.”

Of course he said this even as the Obama administration was Friday-dumping the DHS memo on the public. Forty-eight hours later it was clear any momentum a Republican-friendly version of DREAM had was dead. As Rubio put it: “People are going to say to me, ‘Why are we going to need to do anything on this now. It has been dealt with. We can wait until after the election. . . . And it is going to be hard to argue against that.”

Immigration is tough legislative politics. Congress won’t do anything hard if there is any conceivable way to avoid it. The Obama administration knows this perfectly well, and they must have known too that their fiat gave Congress just the means to avoid doing DREAM.

Daniel Foster — Daniel Foster is a former news editor of National Review Online.

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