First of all, he says that President Obama isn't going to do anything to stop businesses from illegal hiring. Ummm, Chris - perhaps you didn't notice.
"ICE will focus its resources within the worksite enforcement program on the criminal prosecution of employers who knowingly hire illegal workers in order to target the root cause of illegal immigration," Homeland Security chief Janet Napolitano said in April 2009.Then he talks about the "two ships passing in the night:" those who want to stop illegal immigration and those who want to give current undocumented workers a pathway to citizenship. What he failed to mention is that President Obama and Democrats compromised with Republicans and included both heightened border security AND a pathway to citizenship in the bill that passed the Senate.
The change was dramatic: the number of I-9 audits soared from 503 in 2008 to more than 8,000 in 2009.
Over and over again, President Obama has promised that if the House wouldn't take up that compromise, he would do what he can on the issue of deportations - the one area he feels he has legal authority to act alone. That still doesn't provide a pathway to citizenship, but it will provide some relief to otherwise law abiding immigrants who live in fear of deportation.
If Matthews actually understood what "Hardball" means, he would recognize that this was a hardball tactic employed by the President: either pass the compromise or I'll do something you REALLY won't like. Republicans in the House remained intransigent. So now President Obama is going to follow through on his promise to act alone. Several times in his news conference yesterday the President said that all Republicans would have to do to nullify his action would be to pass some version of a compromise on immigration reform.
But now Matthews is railing at the President for failing to compromise. YIKES...what an idiot!!!
UPDATE: Matthews also seems to be ignorant of this reality:
More than 60 percent of Americans back a pathway to citizenship for immigrants living here illegally — winning support from majorities of Democrats, Republicans and independents, according to a sweeping new poll to be released Tuesday.Its possible that the 19% who want the undocumented to be deported were over-represented in the 1/3 of eligible voters who went to the polls on Tuesday. But that's one of the reasons why President Obama said this yesterday:
When it comes to undocumented immigrants, 62 percent of Americans believe they should be allowed to gain citizenship if they meet certain requirements, while 17 percent would support green cards but not citizenship for them. Meanwhile, 19 percent think the undocumented immigrants should be deported.
Split down by party, 70 percent of Democrats, 61 percent of political independents and 51 percent of Republicans said they supported a pathway to citizenship with requirements, according to the survey. The poll did not define what those specific conditions are, but requirements can include background checks and payments of fines and back taxes.
So, to everyone who voted, I want you to know that I hear you. To the two-thirds of voters who chose not to participate in the process yesterday, I hear you, too.