Today, Republicans in the Senate blocked a vote to approve the Defense Authorization Bill – legislation to which the DREAM Act was attached. The DREAM Act would provide a path to citizenship for individuals who were brought to the United States as young children by parents who did not enter the country legally. In response, DNC Chair Tim Kaine released the following statement:
“Senate Republicans’ filibuster of the Defense Authorization Act is a cynical act – one that not only puts our national security at risk but also closes the door of opportunity for countless innocent young people, all so that Republicans can score political points. The Dream Act would quite simply give young people – people who have been raised to love America as their own country – the opportunity to earn American citizenship by serving in our armed forces or pursuing a higher education.
“Far from a radical proposition, the DREAM Act is a critical element of the Department of Defense’s plans to strengthen the military’s recruiting efforts, and it has garnered Republican support in the past. In fact, the Senate approved the DREAM Act just four years ago – with 11 Republicans who are obstructing this critical legislation today voting in favor of it at that time. Their radical policy shift demonstrates not a change of heart but a change of priority – instead of working for the good of middle class American families and promoting the American dream, Republicans are now working on behalf of narrow special interests and elements of their party who would oppose opportunity even for hard working, law abiding children who will grow up to strengthen our military, our education system, and our economic progress.
“President Obama and Democrats in Congress will continue to lead the fight to pass the DREAM Act. I urge Republicans to drop their opposition to this legislation and join with Democrats to ensure its passage sooner rather than later.”