President Barack Obama has said he will act on his own to change U.S. immigration policy. But what does he have in mind?
During a speech last week, the president dropped a hint. "I'm going to keep doing everything I can to keep making our immigration system smarter and more efficient," he said.
That may well have drawn a loud "huh?" from Americans who understand the major immigration problem the nation faces.
Obama is talking the language of a technocrat - a politician who hopes to convince Americans technology is the answer to every challenge.
But the problem is simple: It is far too easy for illegal immigrants to cross the border between the United States and Mexico. Children by the hundreds have proven that during recent weeks, many of them coming into this country illegally and alone.
Unless Obama has some plan to make the border truly secure - as he has claimed in the past it is - he will accomplish nothing by unilateral action. And Congress, by doing nothing on its own, is merely granting Obama license to promise Americans action while not delivering it.