From Douglaston Patch:
"The DREAM Act is a humanitarian bill that helps kids who are our neighbors that are being punished for a decision they did not make," Ackerman said. "All children – documented or undocumented – deserve the same basic educational opportunities that this bill provides."
The act would allow children who were brought to the United States before their 16th birthday and have lived in the country for at least five years to earn permanent legal status.
The bill would require that youths had no criminal record. It would assist them in gaining citizenship through college attendance or joining the military.
Ackerman said the legislation would help as many as 934,000 students who are presently in elementary or secondary school.
"We must fight to pass this legislation now before the current Congress ends because next year we won't have the votes," he said. "We owe these children that much."
Ackerman's letter, which he sent out last week to members of Congress, currently has more than 40 co-signers.
In the letter, the congressman writes that undocumented children have been "held hostage by a national immigration debate that has been both hostile and overtly partisan."
From Fox 5:
As President Obama and his Democratic allies push to pass legislation this year that would allow certain illegal immigrants to become legal US residents, Republicans are pushing back with details about the DREAM Act that have gone largely unnoticed, FOXNews.com reported Saturday.
The legislation would permit young people to become US residents after spending two years in college or the military. It would apply to immigrants who were under 16 when they arrived in the US, have been in the country at least five years and have a diploma from a US high school or the equivalent.
But Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.) released a "DREAM Alert" revealing that at least one version of the legislation would allow qualified illegal immigrants up to the age of 35 to gain resident status, prevent the Department of Homeland Security from removing any illegal immigrant who has a pending application -- regardless of age or criminal record -- and offers amnesty to qualified illegal immigrants with misdemeanor convictions, even DUIs.
The alert says that not only would the legislation put an estimated 2.1 million illegal immigrants on a path to citizenship, it would also give them access to in-state tuition rates at public universities, federal student loans, and federal work-study programs.
Illegal immigrants who gain citizenship under this legislation will have the legal right to petition for the entry of their family members, including their adult brothers and sisters and the parents who illegally brought or sent them to the US.