WASHINGTON (WJZ) — In less than two hours, President Obama will unveil a bold, new immigration reform plan. Any decision he makes is sure to come with controversy.
Derek Valcourt reports members of both parties are in favor of fixing the immigration system, but some oppose the way the president is going about it.
President Obama is getting ready to present the nation with his plan to take action on immigration.
“Part of staying competitive in a global economy is making sure that we have an immigration system that doesn’t send away talent, but attracts it,” the president said.
The president is expected to use his executive authority to shield as many as five million people living in the U.S. illegally from deportation and also grant work permits.
The new protection will include the parents of U.S. born citizens and legal permanent residents. It also expands the “dreamer” program that gives relief to those brought to the U.S. illegally as children.
“If President Obama acts in defiance of the people and imposes his will on the country, Congress will act. We’re considering a variety of options,” said Sen. Mitch McConnell, (R-KY) Minority Leader.
The White House says the president needs to act because the Republican-controlled House failed to follow the Senate’s lead and pass an immigration bill.
“We need comprehensive reform, and it needs to be done by legislation,” said Sen. Ben Cardin, (D) Maryland.
Sen. Cardin tells WJZ Republicans angered by the president’s executive action have it wrong.
“If anyone should be angry, they should be angry at the House of Representatives. For a year and a half, it hasn’t taken up immigration issues even though we know the system and everyone acknowledges the system is broken,” Cardin said.
The president’s executive order will only cover less than half of the estimated 11 million undocumented immigrants living in the United States.
You can watch the president present his plan for immigration reform at 8 p.m. on CBSN.
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