if the Republican Senators want to put up a fight on Obama’s lawless executie amnesty — a big if — Curt Levey proposes a realistic and obvious plan in today’s Wall Street Journal: “Immigration push back: Don’t confirm his judges” (accessible via Google here). Levey writes;
Congress’s approval of unconditional funding for the Department of Homeland Security was an embarrassing setback in Republicans’ struggle to respond to President Obama’s unilateral rewriting of U.S. immigration law. The collapse of the GOP’s plan to tie DHS funding to annulling the president’s immigration orders left the party with two options: sit back and hope that a federal judge’s temporary injunction against the November order is made permanent and is upheld on appeal, or come up with a new plan to force Mr. Obama’s hand.
If Republicans opt for a plan, their best bet is a vow not to confirm the president’s appeals-court nominees until he rescinds his immigration fiats. This strategy has virtues that others do not.
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hort of conceding the fight, the president can do little to ameliorate the pain caused by a circuit-court strategy. While he can potentially bypass GOP opposition to his executive-branch nominees through recess appointments, using them to put a judge on the bench for a year or two of what would otherwise be a lifetime term accomplishes little.
Republican senators will need strong support from their base to sustain this strategy long enough to make it successful, and they are likely to get it. The GOP base is united in wanting to resist Mr. Obama’s left-leaning judicial nominees.
If Republican senators stick together, this is a no-lose strategy. Either the president relents by rescinding or substantially modifying his immigration orders, or Republicans halt his leftward transformation of the circuit courts and keep judicial vacancies open for a possible GOP president in 2017.
So far the Republicans have fought the equivalent of a phony war in opposition to Obama’s executive amnesty. Levey’s alternative would put up a fight. It seems to me the obvious recourse if the Republicans’ opposition to Obama’s lawlessness extends beyond the rhetorical.