Sunday, March 3, 2024

DREAM Act Faces Senate Battle after Passage in House

Millions of undocumented students may be one step closer to having their dreams of officially calling the US “home” come true today if the Senate approves the DREAM Act.

The legislation, which was first introduced a decade ago, overcame its second-to-last hurdle in the Congress late last night after the House passed it with a vote of 216 to 198.  The law would grant legalized status to young people who were brought to this country as children without documentation by their parents if they complete two years of military service or two years in a four-year institution of higher education.

In support of the bill, Rep. Eliot Engel (D-NY) implored his colleagues to “have a little compassion.” He added, “These children came here, they didn’t decide to come here. They know no other country. Some of them don’t even know the language of the country in which they were born, and they deserve to have a right as free Americans.”

The largest association of ethnic news outlets in the country, New America Media, issued a call to action for its audiences to join national efforts to support the DREAM Act.

“This might be the last chance for significant action on immigration for the next two years. Let us seize this opportunity,” the organization says on its website.

In order to pass the Senate, Democrats must muster at least 60 votes to avoid a Republican-led filibuster that would block a vote on the legislation.  Even though Democrats cannot guarantee they have a sufficient amount of votes to prevent this from happening, students all over the country are clinging to their hopes and dreams as they await the final say.

“The DREAM Act is what has kept me going for the last two years,” Myrna Orozco, a 20-year-old Donnelly College political science major from Kansas City, Kan., said.  “There might be hope I can have a driver’s license, an ID. I won’t have to lie to friends about why I can’t go to a club. My heart won’t drop every time I hear a siren. I can be free.”

New America Media

CS Monitor

Kansas City