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Locals split on Obama's immigration changes

1 year 11 months 6 days ago November 20, 2014 Nov 20, 2014 Thursday, November 20 2014 November 20, 2014 5:50 PM in News
Source: WBRZ
By: Troy Gaulden

BATON ROUGE - People around Baton Rouge have mixed feelings about President Obama's expected changes to immigration policy.

Legal immigrants we spoke with say the new policy gives them and their family members hope.

"It's a great opportunity. Everyone is waiting for that, and it's been so long since he promised he was going to do that," said Jorge Armendariz. "So it's a great opportunity, and we certainly hope he does it."

Others we spoke with feel Obama will overstep his power and congress by extending legal status to millions of undocumented immigrants.

"It's very awful of him because it's wrong," said Marie Louise Guste. "I think we have three branches of government for a reason, and I think executive action in this circumstance is wrong. The democratic process has spoken."

About 55,000 illegal immigrants call Louisiana home, according to the Pew Research Center. Some against the immigration changes feel undocumented workers take jobs from Americans.

"There are too many American workers who need jobs, and I do believe those workers should be the priority," said Guste. "Getting jobs to our American people should be our priority."

"We're not stealing anybody's jobs. The chances are there. Who wants them? Just go and take them, just like that," said Armendariz.

The biggest surge of illegal immigrants in Louisiana came after Hurricane Katrina, and the number has stayed relatively steady since then.

The president is scheduled to announce his executive actions tonight at 7 p.m. CT. Click here to watch the announcement online.

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