Republican governors and GOP-led legislatures nationwide could wage a battle to help their counterparts in Washington stop President Barack Obama’s executive amnesty if they wanted to, the New York Times’ Michael Barbaro wrote on Wednesday.
“The new legal protections that the president is poised to bestow on five million illegal immigrants Thursday will immediately thrust the issue back to the states, forcing dozens of governors who vigorously oppose the move to contemplate a raft of vexing new legal questions of their own, like whether to issue driver’s licenses or grant in-state college tuition to such people,” Barbaro wrote.
“For Republican governors, the resentment is now as much operational as it is ideological,” Barbaro continued. “The rapidly unfolding issue quickly overtook what was supposed to be a three-day victory lap here at a pink flamingo-colored resort where they have gathered for the annual meeting of the Republican Governors Association. Instead of crowing about their electoral romp in the midterms, in which they captured 31 statehouses — the most since 1998 — the governors on Wednesday were bombarded by inquiries about how they would grapple with the practical and political repercussions of Mr. Obama’s action.”
The question, however, is whether said governors will actually fight Obama on amnesty or if they’ll let it happen. New Jersey’s Chris Christie, the head of the Republican Governors Association (RGA), refused to say anything about the president’s planned executive amnesty, according to the Times.
“As he has in the past, Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey refused to specify a plan for dealing with illegal immigration, saying he would not articulate a plan until he had decided whether to run for president,” Barbaro wrote.
While in New Hampshire campaigning for gubernatorial candidate Walt Havenstein and former Sen. Scott Brown the day before the election, Christie also refused to criticize Obama’s planned executive amnesty.
“Listen, I don’t have anything more to say about the president than I have already,” Christie said when Breitbart News asked him if Obama’s planned executive amnesty was hurting Democrats nationwide. “I’m gratified that he’s running around the country reminding people that Democrats are Obama Democrats. I think that’s good for our party.”
Ohio’s John Kasich, who was just re-elected by substantial margins after running on a blue collar-themed appeal, said he’d be open to amnesty for illegal aliens.
“Going perhaps the furthest of any potential presidential candidate, Gov. John R. Kasich of Ohio, when pressed on citizenship for undocumented people, said, ‘I’m open to it, I will tell you that,'” Barbaro wrote.
Govs. Scott Walker of Wisconsin, Rick Perry of Texas, and Sam Brownback of Kansas don’t share such views, however.
Perry accused Obama of “sticking his finger into the eye of the American people” after such a resounding electoral victory for Republicans, and said a lawsuit against Obama is “a very real possibility.”
Walker said he’s considering a lawsuit as well. “I would go to the courts,” Walker said. “This is illegal.”
Brownback said that Kansas will not be giving any documentation to illegal aliens in his state no matter what the president tries to do.
“That would be very difficult in our state,” Brownback said.
Maine’s Gov. Paul LePage said Obama’s action isn’t fair to legal immigrants and that he will fight efforts by the administration to implement the law in his state
“It took us nearly 11 years,” LePage said of an effort to help a Jamaican family get a visa when they followed legal immigration law. “Why should everybody just get one tomorrow?”
“Asked if he would embrace greater legal standing for immigrants in Maine, such as worker permits, after Mr. Obama issues his measure, Mr. LePage swatted away the idea as ‘unacceptable,'” Barbaro added.
“I am fighting it, not helping it,” LePage said of Obama’s executive order.
Govs. Mike Pence of Indiana and Bobby Jindal of Louisiana both called on Congress to use the power of the purse to block Obama, Barbaro wrote.
“Every major change in the life of our nation has been done with the consent of our government,” Pence said of Obama’s decision. “I think it would be a profound mistake.”
Barbaro noted that Pence, who is “normally restrained,” could “barely contain his frustration” when discussing Obama’s planned executive amnesty.
It remains to be seen what kind of effort Republican governors and legislatures will lead–if any–to stop Obama, but Conservative Review Senior Editor Daniel Horowitz told Breitbart News that it’s crucial that the effort to stop Obama must include a hard-fought strategic battle from the states as Republicans in Washington fight their own battles with the president on Capitol Hill.
“Obama will seek to create a sense of inevitability right out of the gate,” Horowitz said. “In order to combat this, Republican governors need to step up and publicly commit to blocking this lawlessness in the states. They must make it clear that they will not recognize a status that violates statuses passed by congress and they will not issue drivers licenses for them. This strategy is working well to combat Obamacare, and that was legitimately passed by Congress. There is no reason why the states can’t side with Congress, which has plenary power on immigration, over an imperial president.”