**Disclaimer: This post does not reflect my view on this issue, but I am simply discussing this side of the argument for the sake of this blog.**
After the DREAM Act was defeated in Congress, there has been much outrage. Although there are many supporters of this piece of legislation, there are also some opponents who have reasons that you might not be aware of.
One reason is the belief that the bill will encourage illegal immigrants to flood the borders. As Senator Jeff Sessions (R-AL) said, “The American people are pleading with Congress to enforce our laws, but this bill at its core is a reward for illegal activity.” The DREAM Act would have allowed approximately 2.1 million people to be legalized, and these people can then sponsor relatives to legally come here, creating a huge incentive for illegal immigrant to bring children into the US. The reason this is a problem is that the law enables children to receive benefits such as education and welfare at taxpayer expenses. According to congress.org, one major example of how the DREAM Act is unfair to taxpayers and American students is that it allows aliens who become legal residents to be eligible for in-state tuition benefits. Is this fair for the legal citizens of America?
Senator Sessions also noted that an increase in illegal immigrant that the DREAM Act could potentially bring about would expose Americans to more unlawful activity, such as drug trafficking and crime.
Another reason is that Americans should fix their own domestic problems first. As noted above, the DREAM Act provides in-state tuition benefits. With not enough money to help our own students, America should focus efforts on giving our citizens a more affordable chance at higher education, not opening the doors to previously illegal immigrants. Another domestic problem is the abundance of illegal aliens in our country, who are arguably detrimental to our economy. One problem that an influx of illegal immigrants to this country can be overpopulation, as resources are scarce and immigrants just compete with the citizens for work and receive benefits from taxpayer dollars, yet they can avoid paying taxes. As Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) declared, “We are not going to pass the DREAM Act or any other immigration bill [until] we secure our borders.”
This leaves several thoughts in mind. Is it better that we wait until we improve our domestic conditions before inviting illegal immigrants to become legal? Or is this a matter of empathy–most illegal children cannot control the fact that their parents brought them illegally to America so should they, after living just like any other American child, be granted citizenship? And if this act were to be passed, how can we prevent illegal immigrants from taking advantage of this loophole in the law and bringing more children into the US?