President Obama strides to a podium in the East Room at the White House Nov. 20 to deliver an address to the nation on his immigration actions (Screenshot from White House video).
NEW YORK – It’s common knowledge President Obama signed an executive order directing the Department of Homeland Security to forgive millions of illegal aliens for their past violations of immigration law, right?
Today the National Archives and Records Administration, responsible for such maintaining such filings, said no such executive order was ever signed or filed, confirming WND’s report Wednesday.
A National Archives librarian, Jeffrey Hartley, made the confirmation in an email Thursday to WND.
“As I indicated, it would appear that there is not an Executive Order stemming from the President’s remarks on November 20 on immigration,” Hartley wrote.
Hartley said that neither of the executive orders Obama signed in Las Vegas the day after his announcement fulfill his plan to defer deportations and grant work permits to up to 5 million illegal aliens.
“The only two documents that I have located are two Presidential Memoranda, which are available from the White House site,” Hartley’s email continued. “They can also be found in the November 26, 2014 issue of the Federal Register.”
The two documents Hartley referenced were the two executive orders Obama signed in Las Vegas Nov. 21.
One was a presidential proclamation creating a White House Task Force on New Americans and the other a presidential memorandum instructing the secretaries of State and Homeland Security to consult with various governmental and non-governmental entities to reduce costs and improve service in issuing immigrant and non-immigrant visas.
Meanwhile, the office of Texas Attorney General and Governor-elect Greg Abbott – who has filed a lawsuit against Obama’s immigration action – told WND it was aware there was no executive order signed by Obama implementing the actions outlined to the nation in his Nov. 20 speech.
On Wednesday, attorneys general in 16 other states joined in the lawsuit with Abbott charging Obama’s immigration action violated the U.S. Constitution’s “Take Care” clause and failed to follow the Administrative Procedure Act’s guidelines for implementing new policies, including a comment period to outline the changes’ benefits.
Abbott said in a statement the president “is abdicating his responsibility to faithfully enforce laws that were duly enacted by Congress and attempting to rewrite immigration laws, which he has no authority to do – something the president himself has previously admitted.”
Abbott’s press office referred WND to the complaint filed with the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas asking for declaratory and injunctive relief.
The complaint states: “The President’s new policies were effectuated through Defendant Johnson’s DHS Directive.”
If confirms WND’s report that the only Obama administration document relevant to the plan Obama announced Nov. 20 is a DHS memorandum signed by Johnson titled “Exercising Prosecutorial Discretion with Respect to Individuals Who Came to the United States as Children with Respect to Certain Individuals Who Are the Parents of U.S. Citizens or Permanent Residents.”
Abbott’s complaint further indicated the only basis for the DHS memo directing the change in the operation of the Deferred Action for Child Arrivals program was not a presidential executive order but a legal opinion written by the principal deputy assistant attorney general in the Office of Legal Counsel, Karl R. Thompson, to advise Johnson and White House counsel.
The principal argument in Abbott’s complaint is that the DHS directive violates the president’s constitutional duty to “take Care that the Laws be faithfully executed,” as set forth by the U.S. Constitution in Article II, Section 3, Clause 5.
“The Take Care Clause limits the President’s power and ensures that he will faithfully execute Congress’s laws – not rewrite them under the guise of executive ‘discretion,’” Abbott’s complaint stated in the first count.
Written by JEROME R. CORSI
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