President Obama refused to admit that he broke his 2008 promise to get an immigration bill passed in his first year in office, as he blamed Republicans and the economy for thwarting him and maintained that he “did not make a promise that I would get everything done 100 percent when I was elected.”
“I want you first of all to acknowledge that you did not keep your promise,” the Univision town hall moderator told Obama today.
“That was before the economy was on the verge of collapse,” Obama replied. “That took up a huge amount of time in the first year.” He also said he “did not expect” Republicans to oppose his immigration proposals unanimously. “I’m happy to take responsibility for being naive,” he said, even though Democrats had a supermajority in the Senate and did not need a single Republican vote to pass a bill
Obama then argued, “I did not make a promise that I would get everything done 100 percent when I was elected.”
In fact, Obama guaranteed that he would push for immigration. “I cannot guarantee that it is going to be in the first 100 days,” he said during his first campaign. “But what I can guarantee is that we will have in the first year an immigration bill that I strongly support and that I’m promoting.” (You can see him reiterating that promise in the Buzzfeed video above.)
Of course, Obama pushed the health care bill instead of immigration, which he passed with unanimous Democratic support in the Senate and Democratic-backing in the House.