LAS VEGAS, Nevada- President Barack Obama on Friday announced his decision to sign a historic executive order on immigration reform.The controversial measure allocates more resources to law enforcement on the issue, makes it easier for immigrants to try and stay in the country and contribute to society, and protects millions of undocumented immigrants from deportation.
|Greater Cleveland Immigrant Support Network |
President Don Bryant
"I support the executive order because these people deserve relief after waiting so long for a sluggish Congress to guarantee family unity of U.S. citizens and their undocumented relatives," said Bryant, a longtime greater Cleveland community activist.
While the executive order extends a reprieve to some five million undocumented immigrants slated for deportation, it does not apply to people that come to the country illegally in the future.
Obama, 53, said during a press conference on Friday at a high school in Las Vegas, Nevada
that he used his executive powers because it has been a year and a half since the bipartisan immigration reform bill, which passed the U.S. Senate, hit his desk for subsequent approval by the U.S. House of Representatives to no avail. He said that his goal is to make America's immigration system more fair and more just.
"We are a nation that values families and we should work together to keep them together," said Obama.
"For years we haven't done much about it," the president said. "Well today we are doing something about it."
The president said that Congress still needs to pass a comprehensive immigration reform bill and that statistics on people crossing the borders are at the lowest level since the 1970s when he was in high school. He said that he still believes that border security is important.
"I do believe in secure borders," said Obama.
America's first Black president also said that he will not give up on comprehensive immigration reform.
"I will not give up," said Obama.
Though the audience at the president's press conference was receptive, one heckler told Obama that he believes that the executive order does not do enough and that immigrants need a clear path to citizenship.
U.S. House Speaker John Boehner of Ohio, a conservative Republican, lambasted the president and accused him of acting unilaterally and as "a king or emperor." (www.clevelandurbannews.com) / (www.kathywraycolemanonlinenewsblog.com)