AUSTIN (KXAN) - Gov. Rick Perry issued a statement within a few hours of President Barack Obama making a speech from the White House Rose Garden wherein the president changed his previous intentions about immigration and deportation.
The policy change, announced Friday by Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano, will affect as many as 800,000 immigrants who have lived in fear of deportation, according to AP.
According to Perry:
"The Obama Administration's election-year tactic to bypass Congress and arbitrarily grant amnesty to potentially millions of illegal immigrants is another example of its blatant disregard for our Constitution, our rule of law and our democratic process. The laws of this nation are not open to selective, convenient or political interpretation; they are the very foundation of our freedom, and the protections they guarantee make our nation strong and attractive to immigrants around the world - millions of whom abide by our laws and processes and seek legal entry. These are decisions that should be thoroughly debated within the halls of Congress.
"This Administration has failed to provide a secure border, which is essential to national security, and is instead granting blanket amnesty to those who have broken our laws. Failed border security and immigration policies have created a magnet for those who came in the first place. It's clear President Obama prefers to upend the rule of law, picking winners and losers, rather than work with Congress and the American people on a sustainable, long-term solution."
Obama's announced plan comes one week before he plans to address the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials' annual conference in Orlando.
Republican presidential challenger Mitt Romney is scheduled to speak to the group on Thursday.
Commissioner Todd Staples
Texas Agriculture Commissioner Todd Staples also weighed in on the issue Friday afternoon.
He said is a statement released to the press:
"Pandering is not leadership. This short-sighted, vote-chasing, Band-Aid policy only makes the problem of a porous border and illegal immigration worse, not better. President Obama is chasing votes at the peril of our economy.
"This fragmented policy differs drastically from the approach just adopted by the agriculture leaders from 15 southern states and would work to increase illegal entry instead of reversing this dangerous trend. This is an affront to the millions of people who immigrated to America legally.
"At a time when we have an estimated minimum of 11 million people here illegally, this piecemeal approach to immigration reform is a green light from our president that it is acceptable to flaunt our laws and disregard our borders. This is a completely irresponsible approach and shows a total lack of understanding of the critical nature of these failed policies.
"The president is circumventing Congress and the legislative process set up by our Founding Fathers. Congress or the courts should step up and stop this fraudulent manipulation of our immigration system."
Rep. Lloyg Doggett's reaction
"It's a reasonable decision that recognizes the talents these able young people can offer our country," Doggett said.
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