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California Dems, Amnesty Activists Hail Obama’s Executive Action

California Dems, Amnesty Activists Hail Obama’s Executive Action

Executive action taken today is not a final solution,” said Democrat California Senate President pro Tempore Kevin de León of Obama’s Thursday evening announcement of reprieves for foreign nationals currently illegally present in the United States. Resounding applause for Obama and criticism of Congressional Republicans marked comments from León, Democrat Assembly Speaker Toni Atkins and California amnesty advocates that echoed Obama’s Thursday evening deportation deferral address and lauded California “landmark legislation.”

“In the absence of federal immigration reform, California has passed landmark legislation to help improve the lives of immigrants throughout the golden state, including the California Dream Act, the TRUST Act, the Reuniting Immigrant Families Act, the Domestic Workers Bill of Rights, the Safe and Responsible Drivers Act,” read a post-announcement release from León, Atkins and other pro-amnesty advocates in California.

Starting January 1, 2015, California will become the 11th state to issue driver licenses to illegal aliens under Assembly Bill 60, the “Safe and Responsible Drivers Act.” An estimated 1.4 million illegal aliens will be granted licenses under the new program.

Assembly Speaker Toni Atkins (D-San Diego) said of Obama’s action, “This is a major step forward.”

“I commend President Obama for using his lawful authority to protect millions of hardworking immigrants and their families,” said Senate President pro Tempore Kevin de León (D-Los Angeles). “Although the executive action taken today is not a final solution, it grants California immigrants some relief from an immigration system that has been broken for too long.”

Reshma Shamasunder, Executive Director of the California Immigrant Policy Center, said, “we welcome today’s deportation relief as a key step on the road to inclusion. Yet, there are many more steps to travel on that road. We will continue to fight to expand this policy until all Californians, including members of the LGBT community, can live free of the threat of detention and deportation.”

“After 2 million deportations and 510 days of inaction by the House of Representatives, today we applaud President Obama for utilizing his constitutional power to provide administrative relief to millions of immigrant families,” Angelica Salas, Executive Director, Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights of Los Angeles (CHIRLA) said.

President Obama’s speech Thursday made no mention of the Constitution.

“We celebrate with those who will benefit from today’s announcement, and will continue to fight for those who are excluded,” said Executive Director of ACLU of San Diego and Imperial Counties Norma Chavez-Peterson. “At the same time, we are troubled by the emphasis on militarization of border communities. We call on the President to restore dignity to this region and respect the due process rights of refugees and asylum seekers,”

“Important steps” for foreign nationals illegally present in the United States that may be eligible for the new and expanded Obama policies are provided in the release as well. Much of the advice relates to legal counsel and directs readers to Adminrelief.org. That site is noted as having “links to other organizations that can provide assistance.” Those with a prior order of removal are encouraged to “consult a reputable attorney to determine your eligibility for the program.”

Follow Michelle Moons on Twitter @MichelleDiana

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