Union Chief: Republicans Are ‘Bullying’ President About Amnesty Executive Order

By Penny Starr | November 11, 2014 | 12:29pm EST

Mary Kay Henry, international president of the Service Employees International Union, spoke at a press conference on Nov. 6, 2014 at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C., urging President Barack Obama to grant amnesty to millions of illegal aliens in the United States. (CNSNews.com/Penny Starr)

(CNSNews.com) – The chief of an international labor union said on Thursday that the Republicans are “bullying” President Barack Obama about taking executive action that would grant amnesty to millions of people who are in the country illegally.

“Republican leaders are already playing politics by trying to stop the president from taking administrative action,” Mary Kay Henry, international president of the Service Employees International Union, said at a press conference where she was joined by many illegal aliens at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C.

“Sen. McConnell had the nerve to say that [Obama] would be waving a red flag in front of a bull if he decided to act,” Henry said. “Their game of bullying and politics forces millions of immigrant families to wait in fear of separation and living in the shadows every day.”

Addressing the group as “brothers and sisters,” Henry said the Republicans are to blame for not rubber-stamping the amnesty bill the Senate passed in June that would have allowed millions of illegal aliens a “pathway to citizenship.”

“America’s working families know what an incredible asset immigrant communities are to the nation’s workforce and economy,” Henry said. “We also know who is to blame for refusing to pass common sense immigration reform – Republican congressional leadership.

“Yesterday as Republican congressional leaders issued threats, President Obama reiterated his determination to do what he could within his authority to provide relief for our country’s immigrant families and communities as soon as possible,” Henry said.

“We fully support the president’s commitment, and it is urgently needed,” Henry said. “Millions of immigrants need to be brought out of the shadows and into the light of our economy and democracy through bold and decisive action from the president.”

But while Henry and other members of the “Alliance for Citizenship,” including Rich Trumka, international president of the American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO), want the president to give temporary legal status to those who would have gained that status if the Senate bill was also passed in the House, some at the press conference want to stop all deportations of illegal aliens.

As CNSNews.com reported earlier, one illegal alien or Dreamer who got temporary legal status when Obama signed the executive order known as Deferred Action for Children Arrivals or DACA, expressed her support for amnesty for all.

Cristina Jimenez said at the event she was “representing Dreamers all across the country and our families.”

“We won’t stop organizing and advocating until all the members of our communities and families are protected from deportation,” said Jimenez, who is managing director of United We Dream.

“We’re here to hold the president accountable to his promise to take executive action, and we’re here to call on the president to deliver relief of deportation for millions in our communities,” Jimenez said, adding that this should include parents of Dreamers, workers, and members of the LGBT community.

“All of them should be protected, Mr. President,” Jimenez said.

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