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Reaction in Tenn. to Obama immigration moves


MURFREESBORO, Tenn. (WMOT)  --  President Obama hit the road today to build support for the executive actions regarding immigration he announced Thursday night.

The president will appear Friday at a Las Vegas High School where he last year launched his campaign to overhaul the nation’s immigration policy.

Tennessee Republicans have been swift in their condemnation of the president’s actions. Chris Devaney heads the Tennessee GOP.

“We have to secure the borders first, and then we can go about coming about with some reasonable reforms, but you just cannot – by fiat, which is what a king or an emperor would do – declare five million people free to go in America. I mean it’s just not right.”

Eben Cathey with the Tennessee Immigrant and Refugee Rights Coalition says he was hoping the president would do more, but also says the undocumented community is reacting positively to the president’s plan.

“It’s only a deferral from deportation. It’s not legalization. It’s not a path to citizenship. But now over five million people in the United States, and thousands of people in Tennessee, no longer have to live in fear that when they drive to church or drive to work that they’re going to be pulled over and possibly deported.”

State Rep. Andy Holt (R) and Senator Mae Beavers (R) announced today that they’ve filed a Joint Resolution in the Tennessee General Assembly asking Governor Haslam to file a lawsuit against the Obama Administration challenging his executive action on immigration.