US House-will rise to Obama challenge

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US House Speaker John Boehner NewsLineToday    Gallery Enlarge Image

Manju Shukla
Date  21/11/2014
US House Speaker John Boehner has vowed to frustrate President Barack Obama’s efforts to reform the country’s dilapidated immigration system, saying the House of Representatives “will rise to the challenge.”

In a televised address to the American people on Thursday night, Obama unveiled a sweeping immigration reform plan that could protect up to five million undocumented immigrants from deportation.

An estimated 11 million undocumented immigrants -- most of them from Mexico and Central America -- currently live in the United States.

The US president announced an extensive set of executive actions on immigration policy under which parents of American citizens could apply for work permits and those who came without having proper documents to the United States as children would be protected.

In a news conference at Capitol Hill on Friday, Boehner, whose party claimed a big victory in this month’s midterm elections, attacked Obama over issuing new executive actions on immigration, saying they "deliberately sabotage" bipartisan efforts.

“In the days ahead the people’s house will rise to the challenge,” the speaker said, referring to the Republican-led House of Representatives. “We will not stand idle as the president undermines the rule of law in our country and places lives at risk.”

"We`re working with our members and looking at the options that are available to us, but I will say to you, the House will, in fact, act," Boehner vowed, adding that Obama was “damaging the presidency itself” by using his executive powers to prevent the millions of deportations.

The Republican Party has not only captured a majority in the Senate in the November 4 midterm elections, but it has achieved a historic victory in the House.

This will put Obama`s rivals in charge of the entire Congress during his last two crucial years in office, making life difficult for a president who is looking to establish his legacy.

Following the elections, Boehner called on Obama not to play with the Republican fire, warning him against taking executive actions.

“I’ve made clear to the President that if he acts unilaterally on his own outside of his authority, he will poison the well and there will be no chance for immigration reform moving in this Congress,” Boehner said.

“You play with matches, you take the risk of burning yourself,” the Ohio Republican said. “And he is going to burn himself if he continues down this path.”

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