Monday, June 27, 2011

Administration Eases Up On DREAM Eligible Students

The White House quietly issued a memo from Barack Obama's immigration chief instructing Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officials to prioritize deportations of undocumented immigrants to make it easier for students to stay in the country to complete their educations.

From Mother Jones:

"Has President Barack Obama found a way to enact the principles of the DREAM Act—the bill that would prevent the deportation of young undocumented immigrants who are students or military veterans—without passing the measure itself? Unable to move this legislation through the Republican-controlled Congress, the Obama administration has used its executive authority to shape immigration policy in line with the DREAM Act. This month, in a little-noticed move, Obama's immigration chief advised Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials to use discretion when considering whether to deport certain undocumented immigrants who are particularly vulnerable or have strong community ties to the country. That is, go easy on the sort of undocumented immigrants that the DREAM Act could benefit, among others."

Hmmm.  This reminds me, a bit, of his refusal to defend DOMA.  Instead of making bold decisions, issuing executive orders, and actively pushing for legislation to right social wrongs in our country, he seems to be attempting to make things better for marginalized populations through quieter, hard-to-notice means.  Is this going to benefit him in the long run?

There are some who are certainly not that happy about the memo, with some ICE officials calling it a "law enforcement nightmare" and the Daily Caller saying, "President Barack Obama’s administration is quietly offering a quasi-amnesty for hundreds of thousands of illegal immigrants."

Either way, I hope this does indeed make the struggle to stay in America easier for immigrant students.

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