U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann’s office has backed off a widely-mocked remark suggesting that President Obama gave illegal immigrants the right to vote last year.
The Minnesota Republican made the statement in an interview last month with WND TV of conservative WorldNetDaily fame.
Bachmann, explaining how immigration reform could hurt the Republican Party, mischaracterized Obama’s 2012 executive order ending deportations of illegal immigrants who were brought into the United States as children:
“I think the president, even by executive order, could again wave his magic wand before 2014 and he'd say now all of the new, legal Americans are going to have voting rights. Why do I say that? He did it in 2012! Do you remember? Anyone who was here as a Latina under, ah, age 30, he said, ‘You get to vote.’ What? He decides you get to vote? If he did it 2012, know — take it to the bank — he'll do in 2014.”
In fact, Obama’s executive order had nothing to do with voting, whether by Latinas or Latinos. Since the interview was posted a week ago, Bachmann's comments have generally been derided as the latest example of her reputation for disregarding facts.
But unlike in previous instances, Bachmann’s office took the trouble on Monday to re-state what she now says she meant.
“The point the Congresswoman was making was a hypothetical one given an ongoing theme of the Obama presidency—selective enforcement of laws,” said spokesman Dan Kotman. “President Obama magically creates or delays laws out of political convenience—as we saw with his unilateral decision to change deportation laws before the 2012 election and to delay the Obamacare employer mandate until after the 2014 elections. Given this track record of unilaterally declaring law, what is to keep President Obama from disregarding Congress and the law again by providing executive amnesty, which would mean automatic access to citizenship and voting status?”
Kotman’s clarification may or may not stop another Internet myth from being born. But it certainly won’t end the questions about whether the president could unilaterally bestow citizenship and voting rights on people he thinks might be inclined to vote Democrat.
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