From the Executive Summary:
From the beginning of the Obama Administration, there has been a tension between enhanced immigration enforcement and a push for comprehensive immigration reform (CIR). This tension increased significantly in 2010 as the Administration ramped up its immigration-enforcement efforts at the expense, many believe, of the very people most likely to benefit from legalization and CIR. With the 111th Congress essentially immobilized on reform, but for the dramatic lame-duck passage of the DREAM Act in the House and its near miss in the Senate, the public looked to the President and his Department of Homeland Security (DHS) for some measure of immigration relief. For the most part, they didn’t find it.
Image Via America’s Voice y Feet in Two Worlds
At least some in the Senate are calling President to step up, based on his continued enforcement only policy, specifically regarding DREAM Act eligible students and use the executive power that he so often has claimed he doesn’t have.
U.S .Senator Kirsten Gillibrand joined Majority Leader Harry Reid and 16 of her Senate colleagues yesterday in calling on President Obama to halt deportations of young people who qualify for the DREAM Act and grant those students and young people deferred action on deportation proceedings…The Senators wrote in a letter to President Obama, “We would support a grant of deferred action to all young people who meet the rigorous requirements necessary to be eligible for cancellation of removal or a stay of removal under the DREAM Act. We strongly believe that DREAM Act students should not be removed from the United States.
The letter was signed by Senators Carl Levin (D-MI), Maria Cantwell (D-WA), Patty Murray (D-WA), Mark Begich (D-AK), Jack Reed (D-RI), Barbara Mikulski (D-MD), Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ), Barbara Boxer (D-CA), Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), Chris Coons (D-DE), Michael Bennet (D-CO), John Kerry (D-MA), Jeff Bingaman (D-NM), Daniel Akaka (D-HI), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) and Bill Nelson (D-FL).
While I personally think that all deportations should be put on hold given how out of control enforcement has gone, in large parts thanks to Secure Communities and 287(g), this letter is a step in the right direction. I also, however remain committed to fighting against the “good vs. bad immigrant narrative”. For example, the letter refers to the “mistakes” of the parents of DREAM eligible students. As if neoliberal policies have done nothing to contribute to the causes of migration. Also it criminalizes parents in order to push the “American Dream” of class mobility and academia. But the DREAMers have actually revealed what a false ticket the administration is selling, as it continues to target even those so – called “good immigrants” for deportion, just the same.