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July 08, 2013 12:41 PM Answer In Search of a Question

By Ed Kilgore

I was extremely amused today to run across a Washington Examiner piece by Conn Carroll suggesting that the real culprit if House Republicans kill immigration reform (which of course the Examiner wants them to do anyway) will be—wait for it—Obamacare implementation!

“They have shown no respect for traditional Constitutional separation of powers,” Rep. Phil Roe, R-Tenn., told National Review‘s John Fund about the impact of the Obamacare delays on the immigration debate, “and that makes it difficult to pass laws where the fear is that they will simply ignore the parts they don’t like.”
Rep. Raul Labrador, R-Idaho, who is on the House Judiciary Committee and had been a member of a bipartisan group working on immigration reform, echoed Roe’s concerns on Meet the Press. “In fact, if you look at this Obamacare debacle that they have right now, this administration is actually deciding when and where to actually enforce the law. And that’s what some of us in the House are concerned about. If you give to this administration the authority to decide when they’re going to enforce the law, how they’re going to enforce the law … what’s going to happen is that we’re going to give legalization to 11 million people and Janet Napolitano is going to come to Congress and tell us that the border is already secure and nothing else needs to happen.”

So having ruled out any legislative changes to the Affordable Care Act other than total repeal, House Republicans are citing the trouble the administration is having in implementing it administratively as proof positive that it should have no discretion on immigration policy or anything else. So one Hell, no! leads to another, and then another. And these birds have the gall to accuse Obama of poor leadership and disrespecting the Separation of Powers!

Ed Kilgore is a contributing writer to the Washington Monthly. He is managing editor for The Democratic Strategist and a senior fellow at the Progressive Policy Institute. Find him on Twitter: @ed_kilgore.

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