"A very dangerous situation": GOP senator warns of "violence" if Obama signs immigration order

Outgoing lawmaker Tom Coburn gets downright apoplectic in warning against executive action

Published November 20, 2014 3:28PM (EST)

Tom Coburn   (Reuters/Jonathan Ernst)
Tom Coburn (Reuters/Jonathan Ernst)

Republican Sen. Tom Coburn of Oklahoma warned Wednesday that the country could witness outbreaks of "anarchy" and "violence" if, as expected, President Obama signs an executive order sparing millions of unauthorized immigrants from deportation.

Speaking with USA Today's Susan Page, Coburn predicted that executive action could set off a spiral of lawlessness.

"I don’t think it’s so much the Republican reaction here," Coburn replied after Page asked how Republicans would respond to the order. "The country's going to go nuts, because they're going to see it as a move outside the authority of the president, and it's going to be a very dangerous situation. You're going to see — hopefully not — but you could see instances of anarchy. ... You could see violence."

Asked to clarify his comments, Coburn said, "Well, here’s how people think: If the law doesn’t apply to the president -- and it’s not affirmatively acted on for us as a group, like you’re seeing in Ferguson, Missouri — then why should it apply to me?"

Coburn, elected to the Senate in 2004 on a stridently conservative platform, is retiring from the chamber this year as he faces a cancer battle.

Watch Coburn's comments below, via USA Today (h/t TPM):

By Luke Brinker

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