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Obama Expected To Unveil Immigration Plan On Thursday

President Obama is expected to unveil executive actions on immigration on Thursday and will address the issue in a speech at a Las Vegas high school on Friday, a source familiar with the process tells NPR.

Although White House officials would not confirm details of the announcement, Obama spoke at the same high school in January 2013 when he called on Congress to pass a comprehensive immigration bill. Obama has long said he would take unilateral action on immigration before the end of the year if Congress did not act.

On Tuesday, White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest said the president was nearing a final decision on what actions to take.

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At a discussion on immigration Wednesday at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C., Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson said Obama would act "in the coming days" but said he did not want to get ahead of the president.

Johnson defended the idea of Obama acting unilaterally, saying he believes the president has "a fairly wide latitude within existing executive authority to fix the system."

"It can't be that we're not allowed to lift a finger to fix the broken immigration system until Congress acts," Johnson said. "Well, we've been waiting for Congress to act. It can't be that we're not allowed to take action in a number of respects to reform the system. And we will. And we've identified a number of ways that we will."

NPR's Tamara Keith contributed to this report

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