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St. Petersburg, Florida -- Today, the deportation process begins for hundreds of people in the U.S. illegally. President Barack Obama's request for money to deal with the influx has stalled in the House. But Republicans say Obama's policies are the reason children continue to arrive at the border.

10 News anchor Allison Kropff teams up with PunditFact to check a claim the president isn't enforcing a law.

RELATED: House kills immigration reform

The immigration debate is front and center and pundits are pointing fingers. Former presidential candidate Rick Santorum is one of them and on "Meet the Press," he pointed the finger at the president.

Here's what he said: "That's because we have a president who said, 'Hey, if you come, you're going to be able to stay, because we're not going to enforce the law.' "

At the end, you hear the former governor of Michigan say, "No he did not say that."

In fact, Obama did not say those words. This fact-check is on whether Obama expressed that view.

PunditFact checks claim by Rick Santorum that Obama said if illegal immigrants come, "you're going to be able to stay." WTSP

Republicans are arguing the reason thousands of children from Central America are coming to the border is because of a 2012 executive order issued by Obama, allowing some children to stay in America illegally to defer their legal status.

"The important thing to about this executive order is to potentially qualify for deferred action, meaning you could stay here legally in this country, you had to have been here at least before 2012 and in most cases 2007," says Aaron Sharockman with PunditFact.

That does not apply to any of the children arriving at the border now. But Sharockman, says Santorum, does have one point.

"There are lots of reports coming out the Central American countries that cartels pushing these children North toward the border are saying these kids would be able to stay legally and freely."

But because the executive order does not apply to them, PunditFact rates Santorum's claim mostly false.

PunditFact reached out to Santorum to see if he could clarify his statement, but he did not respond.

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