The ephemeral boost of Obama's immigration power play

Yes, the president won a few news cycles by muscling through a new deportation rule. Too bad it's still June

Edward Morrissey

President Obama's announcement last Friday of a change in immigration-enforcement policy was the latest in a series of attempts to seize control of the narrative in this election cycle — and at least for the moment, the most effective in nearly two months. A week earlier, Obama had tried to grab the weekend news cycle with an ad hoc press conference on the economy, only to commit a huge gaffe by arguing that "the private sector is doing fine"... despite the poor jobs report from the previous Friday. That led to a "reframing" speech on the economy in Ohio last Thursday, which turned out to be a rehash of a speech Obama gave in April. When the media noticed that the president almost literally had nothing new to say about the economy, the White House shifted gears to immigration to change the subject.

The strategy has worked, for now. Over the weekend, the media chewed over what the immigration-enforcement change meant for the election. Obama's action allowed him to heal a breach with Latino voters, who had grown angry over increased deportations during his presidency, as well as with a lack of attention on immigration reform for the last three and a half years.

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Edward Morrissey

Edward Morrissey has been writing about politics since 2003 in his blog, Captain's Quarters, and now writes for His columns have appeared in the Washington Post, the New York Post, The New York Sun, the Washington Times, and other newspapers. Morrissey has a daily Internet talk show on politics and culture at Hot Air. Since 2004, Morrissey has had a weekend talk radio show in the Minneapolis/St. Paul area and often fills in as a guest on Salem Radio Network's nationally-syndicated shows. He lives in the Twin Cities area of Minnesota with his wife, son and daughter-in-law, and his two granddaughters. Morrissey's new book, GOING RED, will be published by Crown Forum on April 5, 2016.