GOP Senators unveil conservative alternative on “Dreamers”

GOP Senators unveil conservative alternative on “Dreamers” 

Posted: 1:57 pm Monday, September 25th, 2017

By Jamie Dupree

Looking for ways to deal with hundreds of thousands of younger illegal immigrants who were brought to the United States by their parents, a group of Republican Senators introduced a plan on Monday which would let those “Dreamers” remain in the U.S. legally, but wait up to fifteen years in line with others who are seeking American citizenship.

“This is not an amnesty bill where we take those individuals and just say, we’re going to give you a quick route to citizenship, and ignore the realities of what happened coming in,” said Sen. James Lankford (R-OK).

“They were children, many of them were two or three years old when they came,” Lankford told a news conference at the Capitol. “They’ve grown up in this country, they know no other place.”

The plan from Lankford, Sen. Thom Tillis (R-NC), and Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT), would not allow “Dreamers” to bring in relatives during that 15 year wait for possible citizenship – as critics worry it will mean ‘chain migration’ once those younger illegal immigrants are allowed to stay in the U.S. legally.

Lankford made clear this bill to deal with the “DACA” children should not be considered on its own, but only as part of a broader Congressional deal on immigration matters.

“This individual piece is not designed to be a stand-alone,” Lankford said, rattling off issues like border security, programs to stop companies from hiring illegal immigrants, and cracking down on people who enter the country legally, but then stay longer than their visa allows them to be in the U.S.

The original plans from Democrats and Republicans in Congress, known as the “Dream Act,” does not envision an immediate pathway to citizenship; instead, the Dreamers would have a six year period of legal probationary status before they could even apply for citizenship.

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