Photo: Barack Obama (Pete Souza)
The New York Times urged U.S. President Barack Obama to curb the number of deportations of undocumented immigrants and make it easier for hundreds of thousands of people to regularize their status so they can continue to live and work in the country.
In an editorial, the newspaper applauded Obama’s decision to use his executive power to attempt a partial fix of the immigration system, but asked him to go a step further.
“Mr. Obama should do his utmost, within the law, to limit the damage done by an obsolete, unjust system that is deporting the wrong people, stifling businesses, damaging families and hurting the economy,” the Times said.
Improving the system should begin by allowing millions of immigrants “to stay, to work and to live without fear,” the paper said, calling on Obama to “scale back the deportation machinery, which he greatly expanded.”
The president’s “decision two years ago to halt deportations of young immigrants called Dreamers was a good first step. Now he should protect Dreamers’ parents, and, if possible, parents of citizen children,” the Times said.
For the daily, the administration’s priorities should be protecting families and those with strong ties to the country, and providing the necessary resources for fighting traffickers of people and drugs, violent gangs and other criminals.
The Times notes that Obama acting alone will spark criticism from Republicans, but said that most Americans are against the GOP’s “obsession” with enforcing existing immigration laws.
“Let the (Republican) party pay a heavy price among Latino and Asian voters for failing to tame its nativist wing, whose only idea for immigration is a fantasy of an airtight border and mass expulsions,” the newspaper said.