With future taxation, and therefore the economy, hanging in the balance, Congress on Wednesday, Dec. 8 decided do talk, instead, about amnesty for illegal aliens provided under the mislabeled “DREAM Act.” The act passed later that night in the House by a vote of 216-198 (including eight Republicans), but faces uncertain prospects in the Senate.
Now on the fourth and fifth versions of the DREAM act, the bill would legalize between 300,000 and 2.1 million illegal immigrants—the children of illegals who were born here or came as youngsters. What is a dream-come-true to supporters is that the act would grant citizenship to these children of illegals who go to college or join the armed forces. But only two years of college attendance is required. So, no college degree is needed.
Supporters insist that undocumented students often don’t realize their predicament until applying for work or college. Most grew up in the U.S. and don’t relate to the land of their parents. Although to qualify for the program, undocumented students must have been brought to the U.S. before they were 16. They must have lived in this country for five consecutive years since that time and be no younger than 12 or older than 35 at the time the act becomes law. They must have earned a high school diploma or GED from an American school and (who knows how to prove it) be of “good moral character.”
By existing law, the Secretary of Defense already can enlist illegal immigrants in the military if it is vital to the national interest. And the law allows such immigrants to become naturalized citizens of the U.S. Their applications are given accelerated treatment.
Neither of the bills under consideration has gone through the customary committee action. Only one of them has been scored as to its cost by the Congressional Budget Office (CBO).
One of the bills would even waive the college and military requirements if compelling circumstances and the deportation of the immigrant would cause a hardship, in the judgment of Homeland Secretary Janet Napolitano. That begins to sound like a law with few requirements. “We are such stuff as dreams are made of,” as Will Shakespeare said and young illegals might say.
According to the Heritage analysis, any of the DREAM amnesty bills are an invitation to fraud. That’s because they would make it illegal for any information in an amnesty application to be used to start removal proceedings against an applicant. Law enforcement agencies would have to prove that “any information they used to find, detain, and try to remove an illegal immigrant was already in their files before an application was received or was not derived from the application” If a lie turns up, no worry for the immigrant.
Law officers can’t use the lie against the immigrant.
The Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors (DREAM) Act keeps recurring like a bad dream in somewhat different versions. Versions have been around sine 2001. Opponents believe it is patently unfair that foreign born students get special treatment resulting in amnesty through the back door.
The DREAM act was shoved onto the Senate floor by Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev), who was reelected with a large Latino vote in November. The bill is a priority for Democrats in the lame-duck session because their numbers will shrink in the new Congress in January, making immigration changes less likely.
A Yahoo News article in November said “It is curious that both sides of the aisle continue to play politics on the backs of kids. The DREAM Act could very easily contain a provision that would shut the door on amnesty for extended family members of undocumented students. Being unwilling to do so speaks volumes of the true intent the bill holds.”
Why have de-facto dual immigration processes—one for legitimate immigrants and one for illegal immigrants? What we need is real reform, including border security. Isn’t the DREAM Act really all about begging votes by pipe-dreaming Democrats?
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