After President Obama captured the public imagination with his executive order allowing hundreds of thousands of young undocumented immigrants to stay in this country, challenger Mitt Romney had a choice: He could either oppose Obama’s initiative and risk alienating millions of Hispanic voters, or he could say Obama wasn’t playing fair by circumventing Congress. Romney chose the latter.
In an appearance on “Face the Nation” yesterday, Romney attacked the president for announcing the order without the approval of Congress.
“This is something Congress has been working on, and I thought we were about to see some proposals brought forward by Sen. Marco Rubio and by Democrat senators, but the president jumped in and said, ’I’m going to take this action’ — he called it a stopgap measure,” Romney said.
In the face of repeated questioning, however, Romney refused to say whether he would reverse the president’s actions if he were elected.
Though the president has a lead among Hispanics that is nearly 40 percent, according to some polls, Romney has made moves to try to bite off a chunk of that support—he recently hired an Hispanic advisor and there is increased talk that he is considering Florida Senator Rubio as his vice presidential pick.
Obama’s executive order grants a temporary, two-year reprieve for young immigrants who came to this country before age 16, who have lived here at least five years and who have clean records.