- - Tuesday, August 26, 2014

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

The border with Mexico teems with illegal aliens, lured by the expectation that Barack Obama will soon make them legal residents. It’s increasingly likely their wish will be granted with the swipe of the president’s pen.

Democrats, who think millions of illegals will make America deep blue forever, can’t hide their giddiness. Neither can certain prospective employers, including Republicans, lusting for cheap and easily abused labor. California Gov. Jerry Brown rolled out the red carpet for them Monday, reminding them of the availability of driver’s licenses for lawbreakers. “You’re all welcome in California,” he said.

Rep. Luis V. Gutierrez of Illinois told MSNBC earlier that the president would soon give permanent residency to the new arrivals, even if it’s not legally his gift to give. “It’s music to my ears,” says Mr. Guttierez, “that someone would have a source at the White House that says it’s 5 million. Let me just say, tomorrow, the next day, and all of this week, we’re getting ready.”

Mr. Obama could avoid enforcing immigration law indefinitely by shelving deportation proceedings. This would enable the illegals to stay without the inconvenience of Congress changing immigration law, which Congress won’t do.

No serious constitutional scholar argues that the president has such power to grant blanket amnesty to those here illegally; such a decision is likely to be overturned by the federal courts because it brazenly violates the president’s oath of office. But that would be too late to stem the next wave of illegal immigration, drawn by the president’s washing away immigration law. The next wave would make the current flood look like a trickle.

Millions of legal immigrants have proudly waited their turn, eager for the day they hand in their permanent residency cards, raise their right hands and take the oath of allegiance to the United States. It takes them years to faithfully learn American history and absorb the nation’s values and traditions. Handing “papers” to anyone who wades across the Rio Grande is a slap in the face to everyone who does it right.

Democrats who regard their border bonanza as the guarantee of blue forever have given little thought to how those crossing over will obtain basic health care, housing, education and more. The welfare system will be overwhelmed. Congress must find the spine to insist that changes to immigration procedures be made through the democratic process. For the sake of the Constitution, the president must put down his pen.

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