July 1, 2010
Today, July 1, 2010, President Obama spoke at American University in Washington, DC and delivered his first major speech on immigration reform. The President acknowledged that the immigration system is broken – both for legal and illegal immigrants. He insisted on bipartisan support. He explained that we should stop denying benefits to the children of undocumented immigrants. He also appealed to people’s hopes about immigration and not their fears. Finally, he acknowledged that comprehensive immigration reform must be tough on illegal immigrants while balancing the need for legal immigrants. There are currently an estimated 11 million undocumented immigrants in the U.S.
In response to the speech, HACU President and CEO Antonio R. Flores said: “(T)he President’s speech to the nation was uplifting and persuasive on why we need comprehensive immigration reform (CIR) and what CIR means. We remain hopeful that the administration will now act and lead our country in what will surely be a difficult and challenging debate. We were happy to hear him allude to his support for S. 729, the Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors Act (better known as the DREAM Act). We hope that the Administration will now move forward to advance CIR without further delay.” Flores went on to say that “we will continue to strive for passage of S. 729 (the DREAM Act) and be ready to support any serious new call to action for the passage of CIR.”
In response to the importance HACU members have placed on the DREAM Act, HACU recently led efforts to form the “Act on the DREAM Coalition” to push for the enactment of the DREAM Act as soon as possible. HACU staff has intensified its DREAM Act advocacy efforts on Capitol Hill with a special focus on the U.S. Senate. HACU also supports the President’s efforts for CIR which would include DREAM provisions.
Further details about the Act on the DREAM coalition can be found at www.actonthedream.org.
HACU Member Advisories are a service of the Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities.