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Lawmakers Labelled As "DREAM Killers" After Vote

 El Diario/La Prensa, Editorial, Staff

WASHINGTON - The young people sitting in the Senate gallery —wearing caps and gowns to symbolize their aspirations—should have seen a display of compromise, a manifestation of democracy and common sense among elected representatives.

Instead, they saw politicians at their worst—playing politics over policy.

Senate Republicans—each and every one of them—blocked a vote that could have opened the door to the DREAM Act. This bill would allow eligible undocumented youth a chance at legalizing their status upon meeting certain criteria—either completing two years of college or military service.

Democratic senators from Arkansas joined Republicans in refusing to allow a procedural vote to move on a defense authorization bill. This has stalled what Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid promised to do—introduce the DREAM Act as an amendment to the defense bill. It also squashed an amendment that would have repealed the policy of "don’t ask, don’t tell" for gays in the military.

The flimsy argument by Republicans is that the amendments were not related to defense. Amendments that allow troops to be replenished and that move our armed forces into the 21st century obviously are.

But this only the latest Republican cop out. Each time legislative sponsors have tried to move the dream forward, most Republicans have bucked. And in doing so, they continue to not only let down desperate but determined young people, but also a nation that could use their talent.

Arizona State University President Michael Crow is among the educators who sees no sense in investing in the schooling of immigrant children only to shut the door on them when they are poised to reach higher education. "This is about talent acquisition," Crow and other higher education leaders emphasized in a teleconference.

Business leaders have come out in favor of the DREAM Act. So have religious leaders. But Republicans won’t budge on this moral, educational and economic question.

We urge Latino voters to take this issue to the midterm elections.

Editor's Note:  El Diario/La Prensa printed a list of the "enemies of the dream": the U.S. Senators who voted against the DREAM Act. In its online edition, EDLP ran 
photosof these senators, along with their phone numbers, and the message: "Make your voice heard."


STORY TAGS: HISPANIC , LATINO , MEXICAN , MINORITY , CIVIL RIGHTS , DISCRIMINATION , RACISM , DIVERSITY , LATINA , RACIAL EQUALITY , BIAS , EQUALITY



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