In early 2012, President Obama issued an executive order, commonly referred to as DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals), which allowed certain undocumented young immigrants to temporarily remain in the United States. While criticized by some, this executive order by President Obama has experienced great success as more than 400,000 young immigrants have now been granted temporary waivers, and has brought focus and criticism upon the failure of the Congress, and particularly the Republican members of the Congress, to take similar action.
In the aftermath of President Obama's executive order, the Congress experienced new energy and attention on proposing and passing immigration reform legislation. However, to date, the Congress has failed to pass any new legislation, and new immigration legislation which would apply to millions of undocumented immigrants is once again being held up in the Congress. If President Obama were to issue another executive order deferring action for millions of additional adult undocumented immigrants, would that put renewed pressure on Congress to finalize an immigration reform bill?
Generally, the answer is yes, but there are many ways to view the situation. Many say that last year's executive order compelled Republicans to take a different approach on immigration reform. But, it is unclear whether such an order would compel the Congress to resolve the current deadlock. Then again, perhaps the threat of an order would compel the House Republicans to resolve the current deadlock.
A common sentiment regarding this issue is expressed by Cristina Jimenez, the managing director of United We Dream, a youth organization, who stated "We will not allow lawmakers to condemn our parents to second-class status. Our parents' dreams enabled our dreams, and we owe our success to them and the sacrifices they made." For more information on this issue, click here