In a surprising but huge piece of news on Friday morning, the Associated Press reported that the Obama Administration is once again bypassing the Republican-controlled do-nothing Congress to put in place some pieces of the DREAM Act and will announce the halting of deportations of younger immigrants early on Friday afternoon.
The new policy is being carried out as a directive by the Department of Homeland Security and while it isn’t a path to citizenship, it will allow 800,000 young immigrants who entered the US as kids to stop living in fear of deportation so they can continue living and working in the United States with a deferral that can be renewed every two years if they meet certain qualifications.
“Under the administration plan, undocumented immigrants will be immune from deportation if they were brought to the United States before they turned 16 and are younger than 30, have been in the country for at least five continuous years, have no criminal history, graduated from a U.S. high school or earned a GED, or served in the military. They also can apply for a work permit that will be good for two years with no limits on how many times it can be renewed.”
This is a humane and compassionate decision by President Obama, who already leads Mitt Romney in the polls among the Hispanic community and will likely help Obama in swing states such as Colorado, Florida and other states where immigration is a big issue among Hispanic populations. Obviously, Republican heads will explode over this. The GOP blocked the DREAM Act in 2010 and have refused to pass any immigration reform bill since taking control of the House. But today, the White House is stepping up on behalf of undocumented immigrants who want nothing more than to seek the American Dream and live and work freely without fear.