Skip to comments.GOP readies for DREAM Act fight
Posted on 11/23/2010 9:20:06 AM PST by Qbert
Senate Republicans and their conservative allies are sharpening their attacks on the proposed DREAM Act that would provide a path to citizenship for some illegal immigrants, declaring it would give amnesty to millions some of them criminals.
The legislation, which would apply to undocumented immigrants who came to the U.S. as children, has been overshadowed by other big-ticket items on the lame-duck congressional calendar. But Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) are now pushing for votes on it this year.
Already, GOP staffers have begun circulating to senators and conservative groups a white paper outlining what they see as the social and financial costs of passing the Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors Act.
In addition to immediately putting an estimated 2.1 million illegal immigrants (including certain criminal aliens) on a path to citizenship, the DREAM Act would give them access to in-state tuition rates at public universities, federal student loans and federal work-study programs, said the research paper, being distributed by Alabama Sen. Jeff Sessions, the ranking Republican on the Senate Judiciary Committee.
The paper adds that those who obtain legal status under the DREAM Act would have the right to seek naturalization for their family members, including the parents who illegally brought them to the U.S. as children.
In less than a decade, this reality could easily double or triple the more than 2.1 million green cards that will be immediately distributed as a result of the DREAM Act, the paper states.
The Heritage Foundation, one of many conservative groups that have received a copy of the paper, is also pumping out information about what it sees as flaws in the proposed law. The foundation is sending out research papers to its 700,000 members and posting blogs written by its analysts.
People do not want to degrade our immigration laws further, and thats what the DREAM Act would do, said Jena Baker McNeill, a homeland security policy analyst at Heritage. Were just being honest what the bill is: It seems like a good bill until you look and see its very much an amnesty bill that will encourage people to come here illegally.
The bills backers, though, say it outlines a rigorous and lengthy process for legalization, hardly the amnesty plan that opponents have depicted.
Eligible immigrants must have entered the U.S. before age 16, lived in the country at least five consecutive years before the bills enactment; been younger than 35 at the time of enactment; admitted to a college or earned a high-school diploma or GED certificate; and should have no serious criminal record.
Those who receive conditional resident status would need to attend college or serve in the military at least two years.
This is about accountability, not amnesty, said a White House official whos been closely monitoring the DREAM Act. It will take a few Republicans to get this through Congress, but they have to realize we cant keep kicking the can down the road. They have to help govern and to solve some of the problems.
In the absence of any broader immigration reform, President Barack Obama reiterated his support for the DREAM Act after Reid vowed last week to bring it to the Senate floor in December as a stand-alone bill. Republicans had blocked the measure in September after Democrats tried to attach it to the defense authorization bill.
To build broader support for the bill, its chief sponsor, Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), has rolled out new versions of the bill that would keep in place a ban on in-state tuition for undocumented students. One version would lower the age of eligibility to 30.
Indiana Sen. Dick Lugar is the only Republican who has signed onto the Durbin bill. But more GOP support will be crucial to reach the 60-vote threshold needed to thwart a filibuster given that some Democrats have already voiced their opposition.
Im not going to support any act that I dont think adds to jobs, or military or to the economy. Consequently I wont support any motion to proceed or any kind of cloture on the DREAM Act, Sen. Ben Nelson (D-Neb.) told POLITICO. In addition, I think that has to be part of an overall comprehensive solution to immigration once we have the border secured, not until then.
Reid has argued to the contrary, saying the legislation recognizes that immigrants are a critical component to a thriving economy and rewards those fighting to defend Americas freedom.
This bill will give children brought illegally to this country at no fault of their own the chance to earn legal status, Reid said.
The Republican research paper tries to correct 10 perceived misperceptions about the bill, including that the bill would not require immigrants to obtain a college degree or even serve in the military. The bill also is not limited to just children, the paper says. The age cap could be as high as 35, meaning some immigrants could be as old as 41 by the time they gain full permanent resident status.
The four-page document also points out that undocumented immigrants with misdemeanor convictions, including DUIs, could still be eligible under the act. And it argues that the bill provides safe harbor for criminal aliens, barring the Homeland Security Department from deporting any alien who has a pending application for permanent status under the DREAM Act.
This loophole will open the floodgates for applications that could stay pending for many years or be litigated as a delay tactic to prevent the illegal aliens removal from the United States, the document reads. The provision will further erode any chances of ending the rampant illegality and fraud in the existing system.
If you thought the term “undocumented worker” was bad just wait. Deval Patrick here in Assachusetts is now calling them “new Americans”.
Someone PLEASE shoot me.
Since some claim that Republicans are the party of “NO”, they should stand up and confirm this statement and say “NO WAY”. Don’t even address it until after January, then close the borders and start deporting all illegals. This was done many years ago, it can be done again but not until they start.
I really hope we can stop the Scorched Earth Democrats as they pursue their Scorched Earth policies during their Scorched Earth congressional session.
One of those "new Americans" might just do that. They do the jobs the old Americans won't.
I hope they mean to carry out the fight in the correct manner:
The first step is to offer a major amendment which would supplement the provisions with
1. (The most crucial thing) A prohibition on “chain” immigration using a DREAM Act beneficiary as the anchor. Something along the lines of “Permanent residency or citizenship attained through the provisions of this act shall not be considered as the basis for family-reunification applications for residence or citizenship in the United States”.
2. A package of border enforcement provisions, including funding for them.
3. Funding for better enforcement against employers knowingly hiring persons in the U.S. illegally and against identity fraud by persons in the U.S. illegally.
If the amendment goes through, don’t fight further, everyone vote their conscience on the amended bill. If it fails, step two is to throw as many procedural roadblocks, including a filibuster in the Senate in the way of the blasted thing.
Now, if you think the amendment will fail for sure, you might ask, “why bother?” Because this puts the ‘Rats and RINOs on record as supporting a covert blanket amnesty-with-track-to-citizenship, rather than (as they claim) merely not wanting to visit the crimes of parents on their children.
He should be calling them Superior Citizens.
This very act is one of the reasons I been stating that the TSA BS is a smokescreen. Don’t let the TSA so dominate our thoughts, that this cr@p gets through! The TSA is nasty, but this is HORRIBLE!
Send all the illegals to California. They can get all the in-state tuition they want.
WE CANNOT AFFORD THIS.
The RATS know that they can’t get this passed. It’s just to force a vote to show Republicans are anti-Latino. This is all a setup—a show vote— for the 2012 elections.
No criminal associations
No disability preventing work, etc.,
I mean, if you think the TSA ‘searches’ are de-humanizing you would not believe what these people had to undergo.
Didn't another Senator simply stop legislation right in it's tracks with a parliamentarian move that puts off the legislation until the next year?
Don’t forget - our ancestors also had to carry identification (resident alien cards, etc.) and had to be able to produce it at a moments notice.
It’s always about the illegals’ dreams. What about US citizens’ dreams?
Patrick has a lot of figment of imagination thingies going on.
He is fraudulent like the rest of them.
One of those “new Americans” might just do that. They do the jobs the old Americans won’t.
Bush #2 repeated that just the other day during an interview with Rush while touting his book. I hoped Rush would call him on it, but he did not.
>Send all the illegals to California. They can get all the in-state tuition they want.
We’re already up to our eyeballs in illegals and “ese’s”. I could barely reach the entrance of Home Depot without hitting an illegal at the entrance.
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