Some Senators Grow a Spine on DREAM Decree

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell's Tuesday comment to reporters that the Senate GOP would wait to see what Gov. Romney had to say about Obama's unconstitutional DREAM decree was apparently superseded yesterday. Sen. Chuck Grassley and 19 other Republican senators, including McConnell, sent a strongly worded letter to the president Wednesday belatedly making the points that need to be made. Some excerpts:

Not only do we question your legal authority to unilaterally act in this regard, we are frustrated that you have intentionally bypassed Congress and the American people. As president you swore to uphold and defend the constitution and enforce laws. Your recently announced directive runs counter to that responsibility. Not only is your directive an affront to our system of representative government and the legislative process, but it is an inappropriate use of executive power.

...

Your directive runs contrary to the premise that American workers must come before foreign nationals. It is astonishing that your administration would grant work authorizations to illegal immigrants during this time of record unemployment. Your directive will only increase competition for American students and workers who struggle to find employment in today's economy.

The letter also asks more than two dozen questions that reporters would have asked if they weren’t part of the administration's semi-official media, such as:

* Why has your position on the legal authority of the Executive Branch changed?

* How will the administration handle family members, specifically the parents who violated federal immigration law?

* Will individuals who entered the U.S. on their own volition — either by crossing the border illegally or overstaying a visa — be eligible for deferred action?

* What action will the administration take if an individual is denied deferred action?

* If USCIS adjudications staff will be diverted from their normal duties to handle the millions of potential deferred action applications, what will be the impact on other USCIS programs?

Yes, it's just a letter, but it's a start. But it may not make much difference if Romney doesn’t adopt some version of the response John O'Sullivan spelled out the other day at National Review Online.