President Obama stood in the Rose Garden Monday and kicked up a cloud of dust.
While blasting House Republicans for blocking his costly "comprehensive immigration reform," having already blamed the Mexican government for the cruel human trafficking fiasco on our southern borders, he now vows to toughen border security.
Never mind that House Republicans from the beginning demanded a secure border before the enactment of any kind of "reform." The president acted as if it was his idea, throwing a tantrum in which he announced he would also bypass Congress.
Scrubbing the legislative process, he gave notice he would pursue further executive actions to reform immigration laws his way.
In his contempt for the Constitution's balance of power, he moreover misrepresented Speaker John Boehner. The speaker, he suggested, had just recently informed him that reform was dead.
But Boehner, who has called the House-rejected reform bill a "thirteen hundred-page bill no one has ever read," corrected the record.
He had long since declared the bill dead. Americans know that, and — like the women and children caught in this created crisis — they deserve better.
Accountability for the human suffering we are witnessing falls on federal officials and politicians who violated their oath to uphold federal law. Instead, the president has dictated policies that contrast sharply with the only immigration law established through our constitutional process.
Our president, in short, is a scofflaw. He has precipitated a crisis, not only at our southern border, but throughout the world. He may mean well, or just think himself our moral superior, but he created a humanitarian tragedy.
Parents induced by reckless amnesty proposals by both parties have chosen to abandon their children.
Until now, those coming here illegally from poor countries created an abandoned generation by leaving their families behind.
That was bad enough, but now it has morphed into a horror story of tens of thousands of parents discarding their children at the border.
Don't say no one saw it coming. Concerned even then, I wrote in the Orange County Register Sept. 6, 2013:
"The gradual reduction of the unlawful migrant population I support will facilitate family reunification, as fathers and mothers who came here unlawfully return to their homelands. Millions of parents are needed by the families left behind more than the money they send back home."
Since then, with all the talk of a "Dream Act" bestowing rights on illegal children, it has become heartbreakingly real.
Obama's refusal to play by international rules and secure our borders, coupled with talk of legalization and the Dream Act, destroys family bonds in nearby developing countries.
This only increases a dependent population of orphans who are not "dreamers," but instead must endure an endless cultural nightmare of family disintegration.
Where did Obama think the children of 15 million unlawful migrants would go after their parents left for the USA, especially given the expectation of an easy amnesty Obama has projected to the world?
Or perhaps — though Monday he talked as if he'd expedite their deportation — President Obama will reward trafficking in abandoned children by granting an improvised de facto amnesty.
Don't wag your finger at House Republicans, Mr. President. Blame the sanctuary and amnesty movements, who together are empowered by the influence of corporations seeking profit from cheap and unlawful labor and by the political left, which sees these poor souls as pawns.
Nothing humane or compassionate can come out of enabling exploitation of border violators, millions of whom never will be eligible for equal citizenship rights under the Senate bill or any feasible version of "immigration reform."
Imagine a child in an impoverished country whose parents disappeared into the underworld of illegal migrants in a faraway land, rather than pursue their dreams of a better life lawfully and as a family. The only thing worse is having those children left alone on our doorstep.
This anti-family dynamic was recognizable. In April of 2012, a former State Department officer who had studied these pathologies wrote:
"The Obama policy allowing illegal aliens to stay as long as they do not get caught committing a more serious crime is an invitation for more fathers to leave their families, and for their abandoned sons and daughters to follow in their footsteps ...."
President Obama made a bad situation dramatically worse. We've gone from splitting families in countries to our south to an invasion by poverty-stricken, helpless children.
President Obama promised us change. He gave it to us.
• Rep. Rohrabacher represents California's 48th District.