But as Obama noted, "As long as the current laws are on the books, it's not just hardened felons who are subject to removal, but sometimes families who are just trying to earn a living, or bright eager students, or decent people with the best of intentions." All the more reason to start with folks in jail.
In a 2010 speech on immigration, Australia Prime Minister Julia Gillard noted, "The rule of law in a just society is part of what attracts so many people to Australia."
The same holds for the United States. Activists have cause to be angry at the president's failure to push a path-to-legalization bill in his first year in office, as promised. But they don't make it easier to pass said legislation when they fight reasonable measures to bolster the rule of law.