The federal legislation that would help undocumented students gain a pathway to citizenship received more bipartisan support this past week when Republican Senator Orrin Hatch from Utah — one of the original architects of the DREAM Act — spoke up in favor of it at a townhall meeting.
The recently released MPI study purports that the DREAM Act would help at least 23,000 undocumented youth in the state of Utah obtain higher education and become productive tax-paying citizens. Hatch agrees that America needs to put young minds to good use by at least letting them attend college.
“With regard to the DREAM Act, a lot of these kids are brought in as infants. They don’t even know that they’re not citizens until they graduate from high school,” Hatch said. “If they’ve lived good lives, if they’ve done good things, why would we penalize them and not let them at least go to school?”
Hatch has been a long-time supporter of the DREAM Act and has actually stated on Congressional record that not passing the legislation is a “tremendous loss” to American society. In fact, he has spoken out in favor of the legislation for longer than Democrat President Barack Obama, and tried to eliminate the arbitrary age ceilings in the bill while keeping the community service option intact, which was later stuck out by Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-CA). His adamant support begs the question: why isn’t Senator Hatch a co-sponsor of the DREAM Act?
Thank Orrin Hatch for his long-time support and ask the esteemed Senator from Utah to co-sponsor the DREAM Act and push for it actively in the absence of comprehensive immigration reform, so that immigrant communities can celebrate a much-needed victory this year.