Sunday, February 3, 2013

"Remember, this is not just a a debate about policy, it's about people." - President Obama

President Obama seems to be committing himself and his administration more deeply in the immigration debate - specifically legal pathways to citizenship. His support for the DREAM act a few years ago was almost enough to get it passed but it failed in Congress at the last minute. Perhaps this is his "Thank You" to the 70% of Latinos who voted for him - whatever the case - I am encouraged by his leadership on this issue. I am also encouraged that many Republicans seem to have woken from their long sleep in a world where everyone is white and powerful and noticed that Latinos are a powerful voting block and maybe they should pay attention to their needs. There seems to be hope for a bipartisan bill at last. While I'm a little too cynical to believe any politician is advocating for this change due to the goodness of their hearts, I'm willing to accept the efforts at face value and support their efforts as long as I think there is true reform. I want undocumented residents to have the opportunity for a full life in America - not a band aid that allows them a few years and then need to be re-evaluated for worthiness. Here is a link to the full article and I've included a few interesting facts from the article below.

To put that a bit more in perspective: In 2011, there were more than 40 million immigrants in the U.S., a record number, according to the Pew Hispanic Center. Of those, 11 million are undocumented, a number that fell from a peak of 12 million in 2007. Roughly 1 million unauthorized immigrants are under the age of 18.

And every year, American high schools produce 65,000 graduates who are unauthorized immigrants, according to the College Board.