The defenses that have so far been mounted of this proto-plan are so far completely underwhelming. There is, for example, the argument that we have to expect this, because Congress is so dysfunctional that the president can't get any laws passed. But this is a terrible example of congressional dysfunction; immigration bills have been failing in Congress for years now, not because Congress is gridlocked, but because this is a difficult and contentious issue, and there's not really a ton of political support for increased immigration. Furthermore, polls on this issue seem to be moving in the wrong direction for the president. In this environment, the most functional Congress in the world might well politely decline to pass a bill that does what the president is proposing.