It’s been two months since the re-introduction of the DREAM Act and we have notched up 22 co-sponsors in the Senate, more than 62 in the House and a stream of endorsements from the likes of the President, Vice-President, Secretary of Homeland Security, Secretary of Labor, Secretary of Education, and big players like Microsoft plus 18 other big businesses and the College Board.
Yesterday, Chair of the House Judiciary Subcommittee on Immigration,Â Congressperson Zoe Lofgren, was on a panel organized by the Stanford Immigrant Rights Project (SIRP), at Stanford University where she expressed support for the passage of the DREAM Act and immigration reform this year.
â€œIs this the year to get it done?â€ she asked. â€œI definitely hope so!â€
But there is plenty of work still to be done before the Fall debate on immigration reform, which is going to be quite a spectacle. Some of us will be up in Capitol Hill testifying for the DREAM Act and immigration reform, while others will hear about it for the very first time. Still, we must all do our part in bringing this bill to fruition, along with immigration reform as a whole.
Obama might use the nomination of Judge Sotomayor to buy him time for immigration reform. Still, it is a move in the right direction and key events are coming up, including the June 8 White House meeting on immigration.
Immigration is no longer the wedge issue that right-wing extremists can use to scare Americans into hating difference and adopting xenophobic attitudes. Most recent polling suggests that more than 60% of Americans support a pathway to citizenship. In effect, the anti-immigration forces are fighting a losing battle with not hard evidence but misinformation and lies, which is precisely why they are so loud. Rhetoric sometimes clouds reasonable policies. We know from experience that if we say something convincingly and repetitively, people do start to think it is true i.e. Iraq has weapons of mass destruction, ‘Illegal Aliens’ are all criminals. That isn’t the way to make intelligent and effective policy. But the nativists know a just and human immigration reform is just a matter of time, hence the ferocity of voices is simply a way to win as many concessions as possible.
If your Senator or Representative is on the fence or supports the bill and has not cosponsored it, get them to do so. More actions are outlined here.