Republicans upset over President Obama’s decision to ignore the illegal immigration of hundreds of thousands of young foreigners should be overjoyed by the precedent the President sets.
The decision to cease enforcing particular provisions of immigration law was not, as some commentors have asserted, a presidential usurpation of legislative power. The Executive branch is not making law, as was the case when it attempted to declare carbon dioxide to be a pollutant in violation of the powers granted to the EPA by Congress. Instead, this is a case where the President disagrees with a law on the books, and thus unilaterally decides not to carry it out.
Instead of complaining about Obama’s decision, conservatives should applaud anything which increases government inaction. Meanwhile Democrats who applaud the President’s decision for the short-term advantage it might give them, should be very wary of handing a precedential hammer to a future Republican president who could use it to smash big government.