Regarding the Sept. 18 editorial “Immigration stutter-steps”:

President Obama’s constitutional duty to faithfully execute immigration law gives him wide latitude in enforcement. If the decision to defer the deportation of undocumented immigrants aims at the more efficient use of law enforcement resources, it falls within the president’s discretion.

In fact, presidents of both parties have used categorical grants of deferred action to postpone the deportation of large groups of undocumented immigrants, including abused women, hurricane victims and refugees.

It is not true, as the editorial asserted, that administrative “parole” has never been used or intended for categories of individuals facing deportation. Through an administrative mechanism known as “parole-in-place,” the Department of Homeland Security permits undocumented spouses of active-duty military personnel to avoid deportation.

Whatever administrative action Mr. Obama takes on immigration, he cannot bestow on unauthorized immigrants any new immigration status. They will remain vulnerable to deportation — until Congress does its job.

David Wolfe Leopold, Cleveland

The writer is a past president of the American Immigration Lawyers Association.