Posted at 12:00 PM ET, 06/16/2012

Santorum: Obama deportation move was ‘arrogant power grab’

Former senator Rick Santorum (R-Pa.) on Saturday became the latest national Republican to criticize President Obama’s order stopping deportations of some young people who were brought to the country illegally as children, although he — like Mitt Romney and others — declined to go into detail on the substance of Obama’s move.


Former senator Rick Santorum (R-Pa.). (Steve Pope/Getty Images)
“I thought it was an arrogant power grab,” Santorum told reporters Saturday morning after speaking at the annual Faith and Freedom Coalition conference. “For the president of the United States to say, ‘I’m going to unilaterally change the enforcement of the law,’ is something that if a Republican would do, they’d be crying for impeachment.”

Asked whether he agreed with the substance of Obama’s move, Santorum shook his head. “No,” he said before heading into a conference room.

Santorum’s comment echoed the criticism from other Republicans that in bypassing Congress on the deportation issue, Obama overstepped his authority.

Most Republicans thus far have declined to wade into the substance of the immigration issue, however, caught between potentially alienating Hispanic voters through opposing Obama’s move on the one hand and alienating the GOP base by embracing a proposal some have cast as “amnesty” on the other.

Former House speaker Newt Gingrich (R-Ga.) on Friday night perhaps went further than most top Republicans in seeking to draw attention to the manner in which Obama acted rather than the actual issue of deportations: In a series of tweets, he sketched a “wish list” of other laws that he would like to see suspended unilaterally by the president.

By  |  12:00 PM ET, 06/16/2012

 
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