Obama: Halting Deportations "Not An Option," Would Be "Ignoring The Law"

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PRESIDENT OBAMA: Here's the problem that I have, Jose, and I've said this consistently, my job in the executive branch is supposed to be to carry out the laws that are passed. Congress has said 'here is the law' when it comes to those who are undocumented, and they've allocated a whole bunch of money for enforcement. And, what I have been able to do is make a legal argument that I think is absolutely right, which is that given the resources that we have, we can't do everything that Congress has asked us to do.

What we can do is then carve out the DREAM Act, saying young people who have basically grown up here are Americans that we should welcome. We're not going to have them operate under a cloud, under a shadow. But if we start broadening that, then essentially I would be ignoring the law in a way that I think would be very difficult to defend legally. So that's not an option.

I do get a little worried that advocates of immigration reform start losing heart and immediately think, 'Well, somehow there's an out here. If Congress doesn't act. we'll just have the president sign something and that'll take care of it and we won't have to worry about it.'

What I've said is there is a there's a path to get this done, and that's through Congress. And right now, everybody should be focused on making sure that that bill that's already passed out of the Senate hits the floor of the House of Representatives. It's not as if the votes are not there. The votes are there. The only thing that's preventing it is, you know, Speaker Boehner decided he doesn't want to call it right now.

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