DREAM of Congress working together
For the fifth time this year, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and fellow Democratic senators are proposing a new version of the Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors (DREAM) Act. If approved, the act would provide current illegal immigrants residing in the U.S. the chance to gain citizenship through proof of long-term residency in the states and attending college or serving in the military for two years. The only thing stopping this act from being passed is Senate Republicans, who will continue to filibuster (or threaten filibustering) the act until Democrats approve an extension of the Bush tax cuts.
There is no reason for Congress not to pass this act, but once again, our nation’s leaders are more concerned with party politics than what is good for the country. What is the problem with a bill that will award citizenship to illegal immigrants who have spent most of their lives in the U.S. and are enhancing their education or serving our country? This act will not cost American taxpayers anything; it may actually help the economy because more students will be paying for college. The U.S. is desperately in need of immigration reform, and this act could be the first step in doing so, yet Republicans refuse to support it until their tax cuts (which were one of the many sources of the recent recession) are extended.
Congress needs to stop playing these give-and-take games and look at what is best for the country, not their party. Maybe if they do, legislation will actually get passed and the nation will start moving forward again. The nation cannot endure another two years like it has just had, when the minority party did all it could to disrupt the president and his party from implementing their political agenda, and very little was done.
Even if the minority party (in this case the Republicans) disagrees with the majority, they should make an attempt to assist the president and his party in passing new legislation. The American public did not elect congressmen to go to Washington and get nothing accomplished. Rightfully so, parties should battle one another on controversial issues, but for one party to say they will not approve any piece of legislation until their truly unnecessary bill is passed is absolutely ridiculous.
In January, Congress will undergo a massive remodel with more than 60 Democratic congressional seats becoming Republican. The last time Congress saw a Republican House with a Democratic president was with the Clinton administration, and during that time, the country experienced maybe its greatest economic expansion under a single administration in U.S. history. With some luck, this future congress will share some similar success and not only rebuild the American economy, but also public support.