More than a dozen center-left and hard-left immigration groups sent representatives to what sounded like another uninspiring strategy session in the White House's Roosevelt Room with senior Obama adviser Valerie Jarrett and Cecilia Munoz, head of the Domestic Policy Council.
It was early on the afternoon of June 30, and none of the participants seated around the long rectangular table had any inkling President Obama was pissed. They would soon find out. Moreover, they would discover, to their surprise, that Obama was no longer pissed at them, but with them. This being a meeting of Democratic allies, of course, some of the groups eventually found a way to get Obama pissed off at them all over again—over the issue of unaccompanied minors at the border.
But first, the story of the day was that Obama became unplugged on immigration, took his temper off mute, shook up the underlying base politics of the next two elections, and turned up to boil his long-simmering feud with Republicans over the constitutional limits of executive power.
Jarrett and Munoz called the meeting to order and, according to participants, expectations were low and anxiety high. A quick look around the table revealed the still-smoldering wound Obama felt after being branded "deporter-in-chief." The authoress of the hottest barb ever directed at Obama by the left, Janet Murguia of the National Council of La Raza, was conspicuously absent. No representative of La Raza was even invited.