Journal for Migration and Refugee Issues, Vol. 5, No. 1, 2009 Posted : 08 Dec 2008 Jean Pierre Espinoza Espinoza Law Offices P.A.


On October 24, 2007, the United States Congress decided to reject legislation that would provide legal status for young immigrants who grew up in the United States, after being brought undocumented by their parents. The Dream Act addresses the complex situation of people who have graduated from American high schools but whose future is prescribed by the current immigration laws. The Dream Act proposes to permit the states to determine residency for higher education purposes and authorize the cancellation of removal and adjustment of status of certain undocumented students who are living for a long term in the United States and entered as children. This bill would amend a provision of the Illegal Immigration Reform and Illegal Responsibility Act (IIRIRA) signed into law by President Clinton in 1996. Although the bill was rejected, the Democrats might bring the Dream Act back for consideration in 2009 now that they won the White House elections and obtained a majority in Congress. Those who believe that this bill is very important hope that Barack Obama will support the prompt reintroduction of the bill. In the presidential debate in Texas, Obama stated that he does not want two classes of citizens in the United States and he mentioned that passing the Dream Act will be top priority if he gets elected.