Good Example Of Critical Thinking On Current Event Report

Type of paper: Critical Thinking

Topic: Obama, Actions, President, Immigration, Government, Management, Migration, Elections

Pages: 5

Words: 1375

Published: 2020/12/14

Immigration reform has long been debated and discussed in American politics. Due to the increase in Hispanic immigrants into the nation, both political parties have called for reform in the system. Hoever, due to gridlock, they have been unable to form a compromise. In order to deal with the immediate problem of who should stay or be deported, President Obama took executive action regarding the immigration crisis. On November 20, 2014 Obama accounted that he would cease the deportation of undocumented parents of US citizens, especially those who have lived in the country for five years. These people would also be able to apply for work permits. Estimates were that around 4 million undocumented people would be affected by this executive action, so this was a substantial policy change by Obama (Ehrenfreund 2014). However, this action has caused outrage within the Republican Party and his actions have since been challenged in the courts. There are many reports describing these recent events and the arguments both sides make in regards to the legality of Obama’s executive action.
President Obama’s actions were challenged in court, and as expected, the media had many different perspecitves on how this went down. On February 17, 2015 Fox News reported that a federal judge had temporarily blocked President Obama’s executive action. The report documents that US District Judge Andrew Hanen blocked the action in a case argued in the state of Texas. 26 states had filed lawsuits to attempt to block the executive action, and Judge Hanen provided them the grounds to do so. Hanen argued that failing to block the lawsuit would allow a potential for the country to “suffer irreparable harm” and “virtually irreversible” actions (“Federal judge,” 2015). Hanen believes that what Obama is essentially doing is legalizing millions of people, and this is something that should not be permitted to happen without oversight and a check on presidential power. Because of the ruling by Hanen, the executive action will be postponed until the lawsuit by the states makes its way through the court system (“Federal judge” 2015).
The article by Fox News continues to provide the reactions by Republicans concerning this ruling. They reported that most of the states opposing this action were in the South and Midwest, which incidentally are generally conservative leaning states. They believed Obama was not faithfully executing the laws of the US constitution and wanted to attempt to limit the power of the presidency through this lawsuit. The article reports that Congress was also prepared to cut funding for the Homeland Security Department as a way to further prevent Obama from taking these actions (“Federal judge” 2015).
Because of the legality of his actions are being challenged, President Obama has been out vigorously defending his actions to the people and the press. An article on CNN describes Obama’s defense for his controversial actions regarding the executive order. President Obama is claiming that his actions are no different than any of the previous presidents regarding immigration reform. Every president in the last 40 years or so has also issued executive order regarding the enforcement of immigration law, and Obama claims what is doing is no different. Obama argues that it is his role to enforce the laws of the country as he sees fit, and this is precisely what this executive order is doing (Spodak 2015).
Another focus on the CNN article is on how Obama stresses that his executive action is only temporary. While the next president could simply undo this action with another executive order, Obama is really calling for Congress to pass meaningful immigration legislation. The article notes several times how Obama calls for Congress to pass a bill instead of trying to cut funding for the Department of Homeland Security. Obama is blaming the House Republicans for keeping an immigration bill from reaching the House floor, and urged Americans that he and the Democrats really do want to fix this issue. According to the CNN article, Boehner did not call the bill to a vote, which is why executive action had to be taken. Obama will focus his deportation efforts on those who present a threat or danger to society, not those who have established families (Spodak 2015).
Obama’s immigration order has now been blocked, but this does not mean he has stopped trying to enforce his actions. In an article by ABC News, they describe the process Obama is now taking in light of his executive action being on hold. They first describe how Obama will appeal this decision, arguing that they are needed in an emergency to help many immigrant families. However, the article describes how the administration believes it very unlikely that they will be granted an emergency stay, so they will have to focus their efforts on defeating the actual lawsuit by the states. ABC believes that this action will ultimately end up before the Supreme Court, who will have the last say. Obama again reaffirmed his stance that his actions were legal, but will abide by the court’s decision to temporarily cease his plan. Obama will not enforce this action through the Department of Homeland Security and will wait for it to play out in the courts. However, Obama is also urging Congress to fund the Department of Homeland Security, which Republicans are currently not keen on doing despite the importance of this department to national security (Karl 2015).
Each of these news articles has a slightly different take on the immigration issue and all take place within about a weeks’ time. The Fox News article portrays Congress in the best light and primarily focuses on the arguments against Obama’s executive action. Very little counter evidence is given in terms of Obama’s arguments and further action, as this focuses primarily on the Republican response. This is to be expected as Fox News does have to appeal to a conservative audience. The CNN focuses much more on Obama’s justifications and the failures of Congress to address this issue. It makes many references to the fact Congressional Republicans failed to vote on an immigration bill that had bipartisan support, which is something the Fox News article left out. The ABC article also has a negative take on Congressional action, but is focused on the future of the legislation and how Obama is now going to deal with the court’s decision to allow the lawsuit against his order.
The difficulties of creating meaningful immigration legislation are shown throughout these articles as there is definitely a political struggle going on between Obama and the Republicans. Regardless of which side one is on, the gridlock and inability to work together is making it difficult for immigrants. The primary issue is the constitutional legality of Obama’s actions, and the news coverage did a good job presenting both sides, when taking in a number of sources. While there is no easy answer concerning the constitutional law, these articles show the need for Congress to actually pass immigration reform, as that is the only lasting solution.
This issue of immigration reform and Obama’s executive actions directly relates to this class because the issue of immigration in the Hispanic community is one that has been discussed. The attitudes of the Republicans show the bias and questions raised against this community in terms of their importance to American society. The reasons Republicans are weary of passing immigration reform is because of the issue of amnesty or providing a path for citizenship. Obama’s actions are popular and seen as the correct course of action by many people in the nation. There is very little reason why parents of children who are American citizens should be deported. However, because Obama took executive action, Republicans and those who oppose it can do so on the grounds of presidential overreach, instead of actually addressing the issue. There is a lot of prejudice against undocumented immigrants, and Obama’s actions would help many come out of the shadows. As this class has shown, there are many challenges for Hispanics in coming to this country, even those who do so legally. They can even be viewed as a threat by many living here in America to their culture (Adalberto 2010). Therefore how to deal with undocumented immigrants directly relates to the Hispanic Americans because they are the ones most affected by this legislation. Obama is trying to help a great number of them feel more secure in their future, but they will have to wait a little longer to see how it plays out in the courts.

Works Cited

Spodak, Cassie. "Obama Defends Immigration Policy in Telemundo Town Hall." CNN, 25 Feb. 2015. Web. 10 Mar. 2015. <http://www.cnn.com/2015/02/25/politics/obama-immigration-dhs-funding/>.
"Federal Judge Temporarily Blocks Obama's Immigration Executive Action." FOX News Network, 17 Feb. 2015. Web. 10 Mar. 2015. <http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2015/02/17/federal-judge-temporarily-blocks-obama-immigration-executive-action/>.
Karl, Jonathan, Serena Marshall, and Arlette Saenz. "Obama Administration Unlikely to Seek Emergency Stay on Immigration Ruling." ABC News. ABC News Network. Web. 10 Mar. 2015. <http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/obama-administration-seek-emergency-stay-immigration-ruling/story?id=29035271>.
Ehrenfreund, Max. "Your Complete Guide to Obama’s Immigration Executive Action." The Washington Post, 20 Nov. 2014. Web. 10 Mar. 2015. <http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/wonkblog/wp/2014/11/19/your-complete-guide-to-obamas-immigration-order/#order>.
Adalberto Aguirre Jr., and Jonathan H. Turner. 2010. American Ethnicity: The Dynamics and Consequences of Discrimination, 7th Edition. McGraw Hill.

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