DREAM deferred, again
The DREAM Act — which would have let at least 100,000 young illegal immigrants work toward citizenship — lost a key vote in the Senate today. The measure, claimed by opponents to be a backdoor amnesty that may have legalized closer to two million people, fell eight yeas short on a cloture vote.
Of the four senators who didn't vote, two are presidential candidates: Chris Dodd, who cosponsored a very similar bill this spring but didn't join Sen. Richard Durbin (D-Ill.) on this bill or its vote, and John McCain, whose hot-and-cold relationship with immigration reform is well known. (Notably Sen. Edward Kennedy [D-Mass.], McCain's co-sponsor on the 2005 comprehensive reform bill that launched over two years of debate, also missed the vote.) Other presidential candidates in the Senate — Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, and Joe Biden — voted in favor of considering the bill.
A round-up of reactions...
- Daily Kos and LoneWacko list the senators who crossed party lines.
- The Federation for American Immigration Reform predicts the vote will bring to a halt other "amnesty" measures.
- The National Immigration Forum looks ahead to AgJobs.
- James Fulford says the DREAM Act lures immigrants to their deaths by encouraging dangerous border crossings and military enlistment.
In related news, despite some editorial board support, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger vetoed the California Dream Act, which would have increased available financial aid for illegal immigrants attending college in the state.