Wednesday, November 24, 2010

DREAM Act Update

According to a radio talk show I heard yesterday, it appears the DREAM Act may be coming up for a vote soon. Let's make sure this passes. Here are the key things to remember about the DREAM Act.

1) The Dream Act will only affect those adults who immigrated here illegally as young children and graduated from US high schools. It is not an automatic pass. They must have attended and graduated high school to get a conditional pass.

2) The applicants for the Dream Act must complete two years of college or military service.

3) They must not be involved in criminal behavior.

4) Immigration currently checks documents very carefully to make sure they are authentic and people receving visas meet the criteria. I have no reason to believe the same won't be true for young adults filing for conditional or permanent residency under the Dream Act. They will need to show high school and college transcripts, be subject to criminal background checks and show evidence that they resided here before they were 16 years old. I don't know the specifics on how residency will need to be proved but my guess is that it will be by school records, medical records or other similar reliable records. Not just someone showing up at immigration and claiming to have lived here for years.

5) These young adults were raised here and speak English. They know the culture and were raised in American communities with American values.

I urge everyone to contact their US Senator or Representative. For those of you in Wisconsin, Sen. Kohl told me he is on the committee that currently has the Senate version of the bill. Let's flood his office with calls urging him to move it to the Senate floor for a vote.

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