Bipartisan DREAM Act Introduced in the Senate

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Deferred action has helped nearly half a million young DREAMers.

Sens. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) and Dick Durbin (D-Ill) introduced a new version of of the DREAM Act in the Senate today. The Senators were prompted to take this rare bipartisan act because Texas is threatening a lawsuit to force the end of the DACA program for young immigrants. President Trump had demanded an end to the DACA program while he was campaigning for president, but over the last six months he has expressed a variety of views on whether it should continue.

White House legislative affairs director Marc Short said at a briefing on Wednesday that “The administration has opposed the Dream Act and we are likely to be consistent in that,” indicating that even if the bill passes in Congress it will not be signed by the president according to The Hill. Short said that the president was focused on increasing arrests of immigrants and cutting legal immigration in half, not on providing a safe haven to young DACA recipients.

In spite of the dismissive attitude of the Trump Administration to the lives and futures of these young people, it is reassuring the at least some members of the Senate want to help. Graham said today: “These kids are running out of asphalt. They’re running out of runway. They came out of the shadows at the invitation of their government. They’ve identified themselves and their legal standing is now in question. It becomes an almost moral decision.” Unfortunately, we no longer expect the current president to make moral decisions.

 

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Patrick Young blogs daily for Long Island Wins. He is the Downstate Advocacy Director of the New York Immigration Coalition and Special Professor of Immigration Law at Hofstra School of Law. He served as the Director of Legal Services and Program at Central American Refugee Center (CARECEN) for three decades before retiring in 2019. Pat is also a student of immigration history and the author of The Immigrants' Civil War.

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