It’s almost comical watching Republicans twist themselves into pretzels coming up with ways to blame Trump administration dysfunction on Barack Obama.
It’s not even painful.
Now that “President” Donald Trump has shocked–just shocked, I tells ya!– everyone with his decision to end the Obama-era Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, Congress must now contend with the six-month window Trump has given them to decide its fate.
Some GOP lawmakers urged Trump not to scrap the program. One of them was House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wisconsin).
But before we pat Ryan on the back for his intrepid stance against the president, it’s important to note that even though Ryan doesn’t think ending DACA is a good idea, he still figured out a way to blame Obama for Trump’s decision to end DACA in the first place.
In a radio interview from his home in Janesville, Wisconsin, Ryan said:
“President Obama did not have the authority to do what he did. You can’t as an executive write legislation out of thin air…And so I really do believe there needs to be a legislative solution.”
Apparently Paul Ryan is load-testing the talking point that Obama’s policy was “unconstitutional” because he passed extra-Congressional legislation.
This is some pretty furtive politicking on Ryan’s part, because DACA is not legislation.
According to ProPublica:
“DACA emerged as the Obama administration’s response to the failed DREAM Act — a bill that, in various forms, moved unsuccessfully through Congress between 2001 and 2011. The DREAM bill would have permanently legalized young immigrants who had been brought to the U.S. illegally as children.
“When that legislation finally failed, Obama created similar programs through executive orders, starting with DACA in 2012. That means DACA can easily be undone by Trump or any other president, which would not be the case if legislation had been enacted.”
Ryan knows this. In fact, he is part of the reason the DREAM Act failed, leading Obama to enact programs, like DACA, to accommodate the more than 800,000 immigrants brought to the US as children now part of our nation’s fabric.
But Ryan is aware most people don’t know this and believe Obama was overstepping his authority by “creating legislation” he was constitutionally unable to do.
Paul Ryan knew exactly what he was doing: preying on people’s ignorance of the Constitution and the controversy surrounding DACA.
Image Credit: Action.UnitedWeDream.