U.S. Representative Lou Barletta, PA-11, a leading voice in the fight against illegal immigration, blasted the decision by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security not to deport illegal aliens.
"For five years, I've been saying that illegal is illegal. Now, illegal is no longer illegal to President Obama and his administration," Rep. Barletta said. "But the Obama Administration does not have the right to pick and choose what laws it enforces. This decision by the Obama Administration undermines the rule of law. American immigration law is very clear, and it should be followed.
"The president does not have the right to declare amnesty for millions of illegal aliens via executive order. The last time amnesty was granted -- in 1986 under President Reagan -- Congress passed the law and the president signed it. Never has such a sweeping change of American immigration policy been made by the president acting alone. You not only have to question his motives, but you also have to question whether or not he is legally allowed to rewrite existing law by himself.
"This new policy is backdoor amnesty, pure and simple.
"At a time when we're cutting waste, fraud, and abuse, the Obama Administration now openly allows people to defraud the system. A few months ago, an illegal alien in the country for six years was caught speeding in my district, but the federal government told local police to let him go -- despite his criminal record -- and that illegal alien had two cards that let him receive state welfare. This new order by the Obama Administration will increase the defrauding of the American taxpayers by illegal aliens.
"What's truly shocking is that this decision was made when the unemployment rate is unacceptably high. Millions of illegal aliens steal jobs from legal American workers, and now the Obama Administration has just given illegal aliens permission to stay and continue stealing those jobs. Conservative estimates say 10 million to 12 million jobs are being stolen by illegal aliens. Imagine if we could give 10 million unemployed Americans a job. Think about what that would do for their families, for their communities, and for our nation.
"Instead, the Obama Administration has gone from ignoring immigration law to rewriting it. Like most Americans, I'm outraged because I respect the rule of law. I would expect Congress to look into this flagrant rewriting of American immigration law."