With House Republicans still scrambling Friday afternoon to pass a border security funding bill – and President Obama set to veto it even if it could pass the Senate, which it can’t – Obama today said he would take some kind of unilateral action to provide resources to deal with the immigrant surge.
Obama spoke during a hastily called news conference at the White House:
I’m going to have to act alone because we don’t have enough resources. Without additional resources and help from Congress were just not going to have the resources to fully solve the problem . . . While they’re out on vacation, I’m going to have to make some tough choices to meet the challenge.
Obama neglected to mention that many lawmakers perform constituent service during August, and that he too will be on vacation for just over two weeks.
Obama sought to paint the House GOP as isolated and said their bill was “extreme:”
The argument isn’t between me and House Republicans. It’s between House Republicans and Senate Republicans. House Republicans and the business community. House Republicans and the evangelical community.
He also suggested that Republicans were acting out of spite and political motives, opposing legislation simply because he supported it. He suggested this approach will be a rationale for future executive action:
In circumstances where even basic, commonsense, plain-vanilla legislation can’t pass because House Republicans consider it somehow a compromise of their principles or giving Obama a victory, then we’ve got a to take action, otherwise we won’t be making progress on the things the American people care about.
Obama did not provide any hint what he would do with respect to the border.