CHARLES KRAUTHAMMER: The president's logic today, when he went soft in his speech, he didn't challenge the Senate bill by saying I will insist on this softer enforcement thing. The logic is if things are going your way, don't get in way. And he was asked by senior Hispanics in the Congress not to polarize the issue, because once he gets into it, he has a way of polarizing [and] demonizing the side and creating tension which might stop progress. And there is here very unusual support from senior Republicans that really hasn't happened in the age of Obama -- it didn't happen on Obamacare, it didn't happen on Cap and Trade, it didn't happen on anything, essentially. It was unilateral role by the Democrats in the two years that they had control of the Congress. So, this is highly unusual and it's a fragile coalition. So, I think he saw that it that way.
But there is sort of another element, which is a little more cynical. I think he understands that even though his proposal would be a lot softer, on enforcement, the bill that the Senate is considering, that was proposed by Republicans and Democrats, creates instant legalization as we spoke about last night. It's called provisional but it really isn't, there's no way it will ever be revoked. So, that you do really have 11 million are told on the day the bill is signed, long before enforcement is assured, that they can work here and stay here. And if you're an illegal immigrant, that is overwhelmingly the most important issue. (Special Report, January 29, 2013)