In June 2013, the Senate passed comprehensive, bipartisan immigration reform. A brave group of Republican and Democrats defied pessimists and proved there was a chance for common ground, even on difficult issues.
While the grand immigration compromise eventually stalled in the House of Representatives, four and a half years later, there is still reason to hope that Washington can again defy the skeptics and pass a bipartisan DREAM Act.
There are nearly 800,000 young people whose lives hang in the balance. Dreamers were brought to the US as children, built their lives here, and were finally given a chance to come out of the shadows. Pulling the rug from under these immigrants would cost the economy billions, break up families, and disrupt the promising futures of hard-working young people. It’s fundamentally unfair and un-American.
Americans across the political spectrum support legal status for Dreamers. Some 88% of Americans and more than 78% of Republicans want legislation to protect Dreamers. Here on Twitter, the conversation has been active, with 16.4 million Tweets just since August, with 3.5 million of those Tweets happening in just the three days around President Trump’s September 5 announcement.
Twitter has also supported Dreamers, joining more than 100 companies in filing an amicus brief in the Northern District of California that argues there is ample constitutional and statutory authority to support Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA). We’ve trained immigrant rights groups on how to use our platform, and our executives have stood up to push Congress to act.
The good news is that bipartisan agreement is again within reach. As Congress debates a long-term continuing resolution to keep the government open past December 22, politicians on both of the aisle say the time is right to address this issue. Just last week, 34 Republican Members of Congress signed a letter to Speaker Paul Ryan urging him to get behind a deal this month. “We must pass legislation that protects DACA recipients from deportation and gives them the opportunity to apply for a more secured status in our country as soon as possible,” the lawmakers wrote. “Reaching across the aisle to protect DACA recipients before the holidays is the right thing to do.”
It is important to add to the conversation: Tweet using the hashtag #DreamActNow, and consider reaching out to your congressional delegation. We’ve never had a better opportunity to do right by our Dreamers.