Yesterday, I told you about the letter sent to President Obama, signed by 22 Senators, asking him to stop the deportation of DREAMers and to grant deferred action. In the letter, they lay out very clearly that he has the authority to do it.
The official White House response came via Cecilia Munoz, former Senior Vice President for the Office of Research, Advocacy and Legislation at the National Council of La Raza (NCLR) and current Director of Intergovernmental Affairs at the White House.
In an interview which aired yesterday on Univision, (this link autoplays in case you are at work), Munoz said that the answer is a legislative one, passing the DREAM Act, and said that there could be a better way to deal with DREAMers cases, but on a one by one basis. Munoz says :
…the President cannot say that he will ignore the law and not apply it for a group of people on a large scale.
Munoz asserts the same position in an interview with Telemundo (autoplay link), that Obama cannot defer the deportations of a whole group of students, but that an option is to do so on a one by one basis.
Cecilia Munoz’s entry into the White House was celebrated as a victory in terms of representation of Latino interests in the White House and in fact her very role, as defined by the White House is “…to ensure America’s citizens and their elected officials have a government that works effectively for them and with them.” So is Munoz right now, by throwing cold water on the efforts of activists, especially DREAMers, to push Obama to use powers that he has to protect the existence of young undocumented people in this country working for and with those DREAMers? Is hers a position of real power or is it rather to serve as a voice repeating a message intended to keep the DREAMers running in circles and running for their very lives?
I’m asking a serious question, to her and those that lauded her place in the White House. Two years in that role, is it time to ask her, what have you done for us lately?