White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest warned Republicans against trying to defund the president's coming executive actions granting deportation relief to illegal immigrants.
"We would hope that Republicans wouldn't do the same thing again," Earnest said Wednesday, referring to last year's failed effort to defund Obamacare.
The threat articulated by some congressional Republicans in recent days won't affect the president's thinking, Earnest said.
"The president has determined to take the kinds of common sense steps that are required to address the worst problems of our broken immigration system. Nothing the president does is a replacement for the kind of robust solution that passive bipartisan support through the United States Senate, but the president is determined to act where House Republicans won't, and there is strong support for that all across the country. ... So, again, it would be a real shame if Republicans were to engage in an effort to shut down the government over a common sense solution like that. But they've done it before. Hopefully they won't do it again."
The administration has reportedly been considering granting deportation relief and work permits to as many as 5 million people here illegally.
"If the president wields his pen and commits that unconstitutional act to legalize millions, I think that becomes something that is nearly political nuclear," King said. "I think the public would be mobilized and galvanized and that changes the dynamic of any continuing resolution and how we might deal with that."King said if that happens House-passed legislation on border security, including rolling back the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals order, "becomes a requirement" for a continuing resolution.