Defending the Dreamers

The decision to end the DACA program proves, yet again, the current administration’s craven heartlessness and lack of comprehension of the economic impacts of their desicions. Today our Attorney General announced the end of the program, claiming it was illegal yet announcing it will continue for six more months. President Trump later followed it up with a tweet that suggested if Congress wasn’t able to fix it legislatively during that six month period he would revisit the decision.

We need to reform our immigration process so people in search of a better life in America have a legal path to do so. We’re talking about human lives, moms and dads seeking a better life for their children.

I have some family roots that extend beyond the American Revolution, but many more came to America from overseas, often passing through Ellis Island. What happened to the America where people of any origin were accepted with open arms as long as they were willing to work hard? Why can’t we have a system that both protects American jobs AND accepts more than just highly educated immigrants into its ranks? 

Right wing media suggests that people who come here illegally are doing so to come in and take advantage of benefits reserved for citizens. We know that this is just not the case. In fact, if they are able to gain employment, they are paying taxes on their salaries without gaining the earned benefits those taxes pay for.

DACA recipients are ineligible for Medicaid, Food Stamps, SSI, Welfare, Section 8, ACA. The average DACA recipient is 26 and came to the US at age 6. 91% are employed; 100% have no criminal record. They pay $495 to renew every two years. Ending the DACA program is unwarranted and unwise. These are solutions for problems that don’t exist and deceiving the American people in the process. If any deserve a path to citizenship it is these young people.

America is greater for its diversity. It shouldn’t matter if you are first generation or tenth generation American. If you pledge to our allegiance, if you swear to uphold our Constitution, and if you work hard you deserve the opportunity to become a citizen. 

As your congressman I will work hard for ALL people including immigrants and dreamers to help reform our immigration system to better reflect what our country was founded on.

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