December 20, 2010 - DREAM Act Fails in the Senate

On Saturday December 18th, 2010, the Senate took a procedural vote on the DREAM Act.  In order to avoid Republican opposition to the bill 60 votes were necessary, however, the final vote was 55 yes and 41 no, thus the DREAM Act failed to pass in the Senate.

The majority of votes in favor of the DREAM Act came from Democrats with 50 voting yes. However, three (3) Republicans voted yes and five (5) Democrats voted no.
Originally introduced in 2001, the DREAM Act addresses the plight of young undocumented immigrants who grew up in the United States after being brought here as children by their parent(s), brought to the U.S. DREAM Act would reward these young people with permanent residence provided they attend college or serve at least two years in the military.
A Washington Post article “DREAM Act defeat reveals failed strategy,” highlights the fact that although the Obama administration has deported over 800,000 undocumented immigrants, to the chagrin of many Democratic and Latino voters, the administration has failed to receive credibility with Republicans or bipartisan support for comprehensive immigration reform.
While campaigning in 2008, President Obama did promise to focus on enforcement first and then follow-up with immigration reform.   Thus it would seem that he is fulfilling the first part of his campaign promise on immigration. However, the dire state of our economy has increased opposition to immigration reform; therefore, no immigration reform has followed the extensive deportations of late. In fact, with the failure of the DREAM Act in this session of Congress and the Republicans taking a majority control in the House of Representatives, many commentators are speculating that it is unlikely that we will see any immigration reform prior to 2012. As such, it remains to be seen whether President Obama will be able to fulfill the second part of his campaign promise and address comprehensive immigration reform.


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