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What President Obama Can Do About Immigration Reform

Kristy Plaza |
August 11, 2014 | 4:52 p.m. PDT

Executive Producer

President Obama has a few options for reforming the nation's broken immigration system. (Twitter/@egypt_speaks)
President Obama has a few options for reforming the nation's broken immigration system. (Twitter/@egypt_speaks)
President Obama is expected to take executive action to address the nation's immigration system before the end of the summer. 

Obama's decision has been years in the making, starting with his action to defer deportation of Dreamers- young people brought into the U.S. illegally as children- and currently with his attempts to pass legislation to protect border kids. 

At a press conference last week, Obama said, " I promise you the American people don't want me just standing around twiddling my thumbs and waiting for Congress to get something done."

One route Obama can take is expanding on the program for Dreamers, giving a temporary reprieve from deportation and issuing work permits. 

The goal of expanding this program is to keep families together, by giving temporary status to the undocumented parents of children born in the U.S. 

Another option is to grant parole to undocumented immigrants in the U.S., used as relief to the spouses of American citizens. This could be done on a case-by-case status and working with immigration authorities.

Whatever President Obama chooses to do about reforming the immigration system, he has to take into account the politics of the GOP and opponents. He can't make executive actions and expect them to hold if he does't have support. 

Doris Meissner, a senior fellow at the Migration Policy Institute said, "The president cannot give green cards. The president cannot give people citizenship. But as to temporary programs that protect people form deportation, those are the issue that are in play."

What do you think should be done about our nation's immigration system?

Reach Executive Producer Kristy Plaza here. Follow her on Twitter here



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