By Reynold N. Mason JD
Atlanta, Nov.22, 2010. Last week across the country DREAM act supporters mobilized, holding rallies from California to New York to get legislators to vote the bill into law in this session of congress. Students at UCLA and Cal State held rallies joined by faculty and staff to keep the pressure on lawmakers and nudge those still on the fence to push the bill over the final hurdle. In New York, members of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus joined several pro- immigration groups at a rally in Brooklyn.
But Dream Act opponents are pushing back. Senator Jeff Sessions last Thursday released a “Dream Alert” drawing attention to what he feels are controversial parts of the proposed law. The alert lists ten issues the senator has with the bill as it now stands. The alert points out that the bill does not require the alien to finish any type of college program as a condition of amnesty. Those who oppose amnesty are quick to point out that aliens who benefit from DREAM can then sponsor their parents and extended family, thereby rewarding with legal status those who broke the law by bringing them into the country. “Some of these immigrants are compelling cases, no doubt about it," said one spokesman, "but you've got to draw some lines a lot narrower than the DREAM Act draws them. This is about giving millions of illegal aliens permanent work permits, and I don't think in this economy that this is a very happy time to be doing that."
The national organization, ALIPAC, which has helped defeat Dream Act Amnesty legislation on prior occasions, is activating national network to direct American citizens into political action against this current version of Dream Act. ALIPAC is asking supporters to get on the phones to members of Congress and the Senate to demand "No Dream Act Amnesty! Focus on Jobs for Americans! Enforce our existing immigration and border laws like most of you promised during the elections!" The problem for most opponents is that the bill will extend amnesty to millions of illegal aliens, encouraging further illegality and making it more difficult to develop a fair and workable immigration policy. Arizona Senator John McCain, a previous supporter of the DREAM act, now says that immigration reform must take place first. He is no longer supports the act. McCain has said he “understands and sympathizes” with the situation of those who would benefit from the act, but feels that the act should not be separate from immigration reform legislation. Democrats, who still hold the majority in the house, if they are to succeed this time in making DREAM law, must put aside their squabbles over leadership, and turn their attention to the business at hand while the levers of power are yet in their grasp.