Dear Mr. President:

I heard recently that you plan to delay any executive action on immigration, such as delaying deportation of child refugees, until after the November elections — this in spite of your stated intention earlier to do something by the “end of the summer.”

I’m sure your advisers told you that this would be a smart political move. You may even believe it yourself. Well, they’re wrong, and so are you if you buy into that.

Oh, sure, it’s true that some of the more hotly contested races that could determine control of the Senate are in so-called “red” states. I know it looks like a bad idea to rile up the Republican “base” of xenophobes, bigots, Fox News-addicted outrage junkies, and various other angry, frightened old white dudes. My stars, taking executive action might even upset them enough to get to the polls to vote against Democrats.

But here’s the thing, Mr. President: They’re going to get riled up no matter what you do or don’t do. Riled up is their default state. They’ve been in a state of apoplectic rage since Nov. 4, 2008, when you sent the poster child for angry old white dudes and his more-confused-than-angry running mate packing.

It only got worse four years later, when their supposed savior, Lord Mitt Romney, couldn’t get out of the way of his own feet and stumbled to a humiliating loss that everyone except them could see coming. All you have to do to upset the Republican base and get them to the polls is be a black Democrat in the White House.

You don’t believe me when I say that trying not to upset the Raging Right is a sucker’s game? Check out Newt Gingrich, who went on CNN’s “State of the Union” to call you “cowardly” and “indecisive” for delaying taking action on immigration.

Of course, no one on the program bothered to point out that on Aug. 3, Newt called such action “unconstitutional” and an example of “the Venezuelan-style, anything-I-want-is-legal presidency.”

Look at the House, where the speaker, John Boehner, urged you to act on immigration “without the need for congressional action,” the day after his caucus voted to sue you for acting without congressional action — to delay implementation of a law that they repeatedly voted to repeal.

You cannot placate these people. You cannot calm them down, especially since there’s a billion-dollar industry dedicated to keeping them angry and so afraid of everything that they’re convinced that they’ll be robbed, raped or killed if they don’t have a gun on them every time they leave the house.

Instead of trying to soothe the Republican base, why don’t you pay some attention to your own? You seem so worried at the prospect of right-wingers going to the polls that you’re forgetting the people you need to go there.

Latinos, of course, are the fastest growing demographic in the nation. You also need to get young people fired up. But what I’m hearing from them is a growing sense of frustration, complaints that “politicians are all the same,” and a general apathy about voting.

Dems will probably still get a goodly portion of the female vote, but that’s mainly because several Republicans will inevitably say something incredibly stupid, misogynistic, or patronizing toward women before it’s over. But we need the rest of the constituency, too. So now is not the time for half-measures.

I know, Mr. President, that you’re called “No Drama Obama.” But maybe it’s time for something dramatic. For starters, use the power you have as the executive to delay or defer the deportation of refugee children.

For all the caterwauling about “tyranny” (which, remember, they’re going to do anyway), that power falls squarely within the scope of what’s called “prosecutorial discretion”: the recognition that you simply don’t have unlimited resources to prosecute every law, all the time, so the executive branch can allocate those resources as it sees fit. Prosecutorial discretion has long been recognized by the courts as a legitimate use of executive power.

The Teahadists have threatened impeachment if you try that? Let ’em bring it. Lawsuits? Bring those on, too.

Iowa Rep. Steve King has raised the idea of another government shutdown in protest if you take executive action. Tell him, “Please proceed, Congressman.” Because if there’s one thing that will get wavering Democrats and independents off the couch and into the voting booths, it’ll be the spectacle of the wingnuts once again waving their torches and pitchforks and threatening to destroy the country in order to save it.

So do the right thing, Mr. President, and dare the Republicans to do something about it. Thank you, and God bless.

(16) comments

Ce Foote

So much hot air....

Mark Hayes

Sit up, let it out.

gail hanley

Obama just plain doesn't like America. That was apparent from the get go. No group of people on earth are dumber than white liberals. Even the blacks were more skeptical than white liberals. The whole thing reminded me of the OJ case. When he was aquitted blacks cheering in the street not because they thought he was innocent but because finally a guilty black guy got let go. Then the is the whole story of his life factor. Clearly, anyone who understood his story would know he didn't know or have convictions. The man is luke warm about most things. He is good at delivering his lines. But often when he's off the prompter you have no clue what he said. I know he is praying now that nothing horrible happens with terrorism domestically because it will shred his legacy. One thing Clinton and bush had is they could rise to a crisis with a modicum of dignity. Obama leaves a speech on beheading and goes to golf. Just makes the US look weak. Add to the fact he is starting to look physically weak while Putin parades all over the world with his shirt off. In this day in age whether or not you ascribe to the philosophy the leader of the free world has to have a commanding presence in every situation. Almost makes one long for the days of womanizer Clinton or word bumbling Bush. I don't know is that what Dusty was trying to say?

Richard Wright

Francis - maybe the hatred should be reserved for the left, you know like Dusty, who never presents his case without either degrading or misrepresenting the Republican's position. There is not hatred conveyed when one questions a Republican's competency but question Obama and you are a racist.
Truthfully, Obama has never been a President of the people rather he has been the great pretender, claiming offense against people who have earned the right to call him exactly what he is - a weak ideologue who has no concept of the position he was elected to or possessing the skills needed to fill the job.
He presents no compelling case for amnesty and appears to ignore the potential consequences. He had no strategy for ISIS last week and this week he can only say it will not be like the was in Iraq or Afghanistan. You know those two wars (or one really defined correctly as the Global War on Terrorism), the ones we won the war but lost the peace by creating an arbitrary end date. Even Hillary would have gotten that right.

Mark Hayes

FRF- Having a responsive following has become more important to Rhoades than the actual subject matter. A buffoon, who is a recognizable figure in this little media outlet, and if that is a satisfactory accomplishment then let him enjoy his achievement.

Mark Hayes

The comments regarding Obama have demonstrated just how divided this country has become, for his own success at achieving that he must be congratulated, no other has been so gifted. Had he been more like several of his predecessors, less defiant, more willing to work with his adversaries, not trying to be more than he is capable of, and not so determined to use his racial background as a tool, he may have been a decent President, many did not like either Bush, or Clinton as Presidents, but they did not bring forth nearly the amount of actual hatred that Obama has managed to muster, there will be retaliation for what he has done, it will show in the only way possible, by the Republicans who are waiting with a clenched fist to remove or replace any thing possible that has been created or approved by Obama, they who are most in need, the government subsidized population, will suffer the most due to his defiance, Republican rule is not so generous to non contributors, and their Tea Party counterparts are definitely not pro amnesty, and they have become a voice to be recognized. We may have to suffer through two more years or so, and I guess he will make it as miserable as possible.

gail hanley

Obama uses his blackness only to win votes. He has capitalized off white guilt when possible, road the affirmative action train while essentially hating the part of him that is white. Now I can't understand IF that is a result of not having a father that is present in the home, being raised by white grandparents while not being white, or a self loathing complication of all of it put together. Or is it just that particular generation who were pampered and loved to death? It is the first generation that did not get drafted to any war. A generation that was encouraged to find themselves without responsibility. He smoked crack and admits it. I could have never taken the time or had the money to smoke crack or any other substance because I had enormous responsibilities. All that spells progressive liberal. First real job is being President. Wow sounds like a few of our other Presidents!

Mark Hayes

The African Americans are going to be far more impacted by the Illegals than any others, I would have though Obama would have done more for his own. In years to come there will remain a minority population but it will not be the Hispanics, they will have elevated themselves into positions of power advancing over the very ethnic group that supported them, NAACP. They will wished they had voiced their opposition, even if it meant calling out Obama.

Keith Miller

First, they are not "refugees" they are illegals breaking our laws and carrying diseases, which is something that the progressive socialist party could care less about. They look at illegals as future votes.

Second, sooner or later the progressive socialist party will realize your king has a real hard time telling the truth, period. He has proven he speaks without any thought to what he is saying, and the main stream press lets the king get by with it, or is he just that incompetent ??

Third, so go ahead mr king, use your "kingly" powers and grant amnesty to the 15,000,000, or 20,000,000, or 30,000,000 illegals, or what ever the true figure is, and keep the progressive socialist party in power.

Fourth, lets hope that when we have to start cutting welfare benefits like other socialist countries...(google, Spain, Portugal, Greece, etc) and the riots begin, there is enough of this country left that we can elect true common sense conservatives to office and restore us back to foundation that our Founding Fathers laid forth in our Constitution.

Mark Hayes

I was being a bit facetious Pearl but appreciate your opinion, an opinion I share. I have realized it is a matter of just how low either party will go to scrape up votes, seems both are willing to get into the gutter.

gail hanley

You asked why, Francis. Here is my explanation. It is the shear numbers they have. They are the fastest growing voting block in this country. The democrats have figured that out and our pandering to them. Not too so very different than the Kennedy's did decades ago with the black population. This country was built by illegal immigrants. The Chinese and Irish with the railroads. Part cheap labor part future voting blocks. This is not new. It's just more publicized and apparent now because of the media attention and the volume.

Mark Hayes

Many of businesses and construction contractors benefit from the illegals, it's not that they care about the welfare of these people, they know they can push and prod them, pay them less and line their own pockets with the savings, it has gone on here during the building boom and will return, a vast majority of home construction, infrastructure work and commercial building in this area has been, and will continue to be a source of income for these illegals and undocumented workers, it will only be when the enter into other fields will it cause concern, lawyers that advocate for them know they will never feel the impact, and they see a source of revenue in representing them. We have a government that will not allow our laws pertaining to immigration work. Seems odd that we will enforce those laws when it involves all those other than Hispanics, why is that?

Mark Hayes

Reconciled to the fact it will be futile to argue about the eventual path to citizenship for all these illegals and their children, I do believe eventually the same type atmosphere many of them claim to have left will resurface by their own actions right here, gang members are in the mix of these illegals and will only grow in numbers, many of these illegals will never reach the goals they hope to achieve and will soon be finding criminal activity their only outlet, I would only hope that in this proposed path that there is a stipulation as to if, and when any of our new citizens are arrested for criminal activity they be eligible to lose this gift of becoming a citizen of this country and are deported never to return legally again. I really don't quite understand how this will work because it seems we are granting criminals of one ethnic group amnesty yet do not offer any others that same benefit, but it is what it is and our next generations will have to live in the world we have left them.

gail hanley

Here's the thing about wading into the immigration conversation IF you're not a border state. Might be like the Pinehurst conversation about the deer population. Deer ain't in your backyard eating your flowers you love them they are you don't.

Mark Hayes

Gallup 9/12/14 Obama Rating Approve 40% Disapprove 53% I am going to assume those younger people you have seeking your opinion are your own children.

gail hanley

Dusty, in your chats with young people ask them to name one US senator. They can't. I guarantee you after eight years of Obama saying one thing and doing another Romney could beat about any democrat in the next election. You are right though if Republicans have any chance of survival they will have to embrace the Hispaniv population sooner rather than later.

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