Immigration Reform: Obama’s Executive Order on Immigration of Nov. 20, 2014

On November 20, 2014 President Obama announced his Executive Order aimed at making some significant changes to the U.S. immigration law. The new Order, which is also known as Immigration Accountability Executive Action, will help to secure the U.S. borders, on the one hand, and legalize about 5 million undocumented immigrants, on the other hand.

The major points of President Obama’s Executive Order are:

  1. Fighting Illegal Immigration at the Border: The administration will provide new resources at the U.S. borders to help law enforcement personnel to stop illegal crossings and send back those who crossed over. These actions should reduce the number of illegal immigrants coming to this country.
  2. Deporting Criminals: The law enforcement agencies will focus on people who pose a threat to communities where they live – felons rather than families, criminals rather than children. Criminals, suspected terrorists and recent border crossers will be deported.
  3. Temporarily Relief to Undocumented Immigrants: New efforts will be made to bring undocumented immigrants out of the shadow, so they can play by the rules. Those undocumented aliens who have lived in the U.S.A. for more than five years and are parents of U.S. citizens or green card holders will have a chance to legalize their presence in this country. They will have to pass criminal check, pay taxes, contribute more fully to the American economy and temporarily stay without fear of deportation.

According to President Obama these actions are needed in order to “fix our broken immigration system.” It is not an immigration amnesty, or legalization, or a pass to citizenship. It is a compromise rather than a permanent solution. The permanent solution can only be done by Congress. It would be a comprehensive bill on immigration reform.