After promising to take executive action on immigration before the end of the summer, President Barack Obama decided on Friday to wait until after the November congressional elections, White House officials told The Associated Press.
Obama had pledged on June 30 to review recommendations for executive action and "adopt those recommendations without further delay," but partisan fighting following that promise sent Congress into its recess without any final bill. And while immigration advocacy groups called on Obama to act independently, officials said Obama made his decision based on concern from Democrats facing tough re-election races.
Even as he delayed any executive action, though, he again addressed the issue in Wales on Friday — minus a clear timeline.
"I want to be very clear: My intention is, in the absence of … action by Congress, I'm going to do what I can do within the legal constraints of my office, because it's the right thing to do for the country," Obama said.
Both Congress and some legal experts question how much actual authority Obama has on the issue.