Democrats were planning to hold a press conference today featuring three college students whose parents came to the United States illegally in order to promote the DREAM Act. But the event was postponed after anti-immigrant Rep. Tom Tancredo (R-CO) called on the Immigration and Customs Enforcement Agency to arrest the three students:The DREAM (Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors) Act would allow undocumented students to become permanent citizens after several years provided they complete two years of college, trade school or military service. Details of the bill are here (pdf). The requirements are below:"I call on the Immigration and Customs Enforcement Agency to detain any illegal aliens at this press conference," said Tancredo, who claims to have alerted federal authorities about the well publicized press confrence. "Just because these illegal aliens are being used for political gain doesn't mean they get immunity from the law. If we can't enforce our laws inside the building where American laws are made, where can we enforce them?"
To qualify for immigration relief under the DREAM Act, a student must have been brought to the U.S. more than 5 years ago when he or she was 15 years old or younger and must be able to demonstrate good moral character. In the Senate version, the student must also be under 30 years old on the date the DREAM Act is signed into law. Under the DREAM Act, once such a student graduates from high school, he or she would be permitted to apply for conditional status, which would authorize up to 6 years of legal residence. During the 6-year period, the student would be required to graduate from a 2-year college, complete at least 2 years toward a 4-year degree, or serve in the U.S. military for at least 2 years. Permanent residence would be granted at the end of the 6-year period if the student has met these requirements and has continued to maintain good moral character. The House version -- but not the Senate version -- of the DREAM Act would also eliminate a federal provision that discourages states from providing in-state tuition to their undocumented immigrant student residents, thus restoring full authority to the states to determine state college and university fees.The Dream Act is a good thing. Tancredo's being a bully. [Cross-posted on TalkLeft.]
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