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In immigration news: Obama defends action, DMV prepares for license rush, more



People wait in line to get into a California Department of Motor Vehicles office in Los Angeles in February 2009. The DMV is training 900 newly hired employees in anticipation of a crush of applications this January, when immigrants without legal status may begin applying for a special driver's license under a new law.
People wait in line to get into a California Department of Motor Vehicles office in Los Angeles in February 2009. The DMV is training 900 newly hired employees in anticipation of a crush of applications this January, when immigrants without legal status may begin applying for a special driver's license under a new law.
Robyn Beck/AFP/Getty Images

Obama defends immigration action, challenges Congress -USA Today Speaking in Nashville, Tenn. on Tuesday, President Obama "defended a plan that has provoked outrage among congressional Republicans, who say he lacks the authority to enact such large-scale immigration policy without legislative action." Obama tossed it back to Congress: "When members of Congress question whether I have the authority to do this, I have one answer: yes, and pass a bill."

California DMV trains 900 new hires to handle immigrant licensing surge - Southern California Public Radio The California Department of Motor Vehicles is training 900 new employees in anticipation of a crush of applications in January, when immigrants without legal status may begin applying for a special driver's license. The licenses will be made available as part of AB 60, a new state law that takes effect next month. Nearly 380,000 license appointments have already been scheduled for the first two weeks of the new year.

No way home: Illegal immigrants probably unable to travel under Obama’s plan - Washington Post Immigrants who may qualify for protection under President Obama's executive immigration order would be able to remain in the U.S. and work legally for three years at a time, but the order apparently does not allow them to travel to their home countries "except for brief emergency trips." If they were to travel and get caught, it could jeopardize their temporary legal status.

Immigrants in Limbo Over Obama Immigrant Rules - Associated Press While millions may obtain temporary protection from deportation under the Obama administration's new immigration plan, many won't qualify, and others are uncertain. From the story: "...a still unknown number of immigrants are going to fall through the cracks, immigration attorneys say, because they can't prove they've been here long enough, their children only grew up here but were not born in the United States, or they, like Hernandez, are already in the deportation queue."

Watch President Obama get a little testy over his immigration record -Washington Post Video from the president's interview with Fusion journalist Jorge Ramos, who questioned Obama on his deportation track record. From the transcript: "Ramos: But if you, as you're saying, you always had the legal authority to stop deportations, then why did you deport two million people? For six years you did it. You destroyed many families. They called you the 'deporter-in-chief.' Obama: Listen ... Jorge .. we're not ... listen Jorge ... you called me 'deporter-in-chief.' Ramos: It was Janet Murgia of La Raza. ... You could have stopped deportations. That's the whole idea."