The White House’s chief of staff will reportedly meet with Senate Democrats on Thursday, fueling speculation that President Barack Obama may make an announcement on his executive amnesty this week before Congress leaves for its Thanksgiving recess.
According to a Washington Post report, White House Chief of Staff Denis McDonough will meet with Senate Democrats at their Thursday policy lunch “to discuss the economy and priorities in the lame duck” Congress.
As the Post notes, “the biggest White House priority these days is immigration” and “such visits usually coincide with major policy announcements.”
Obama is reportedly set on granting as many as five million illegal immigrants executive amnesty and work permits, and reports have indicated he may make the announcement as early as this week.
On Tuesday, White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest said Obama was “nearing” a final decision and would not answer whether Obama has received the final recommendations on what executive actions he can take on immigration from the Justice Department and the Department of Homeland Security.
Republicans in Congress who are against Obama’s overreach want to put language in the next bill that prohibits the White House from using federal funds to enact Obama’s executive amnesty. Earnest admitted that the pressure put on by anti-amnesty Republicans in Congress is impacting Obama as he weights how big and broad his executive amnesty will be and when to announce it.
Earnest said he will “concede” that “this is something that has been discussed at the White House.” Earnest also said that since Republicans know that Obama will act on amnesty before the end of the year, Republicans may try to preemptively prevent Obama from spending federal funds to enact the executive amnesty even if Obama makes his announcement “late in December” after Congress meets its December 11 deadline to fund the government.