Friday, September 17, 2010

ALERT - Membership Action Needed - DREAM Act

I’m sorry to send you two alerts in one day, but Congress wasted no time getting down to business once they were back in Washington. How many times in the past few years have we seen unpopular legislation attached to Defense Appropriations bills because those that support it know that their opponents dare not vote against funding for our troops? What better argument can be made for restricting bills to single subjects?

Harry Reid has announced that he’ll attempt to add the DREAM Act as well as an amendment repealing Don’t Ask/Don’t Tell to the DoD defense bill to be voted on next week. The DREAM Act is a bill allowing a path to citizenship for illegal aliens by providing them with higher education benefits and eventually citizenship. Worse, once these DREAM Aliens become citizens and turn 21 they can then take advantage of chain immigration to legalize their parents and other family members. There are two bills – S729 in the Senate and HR1751, the American Dream Act, in the House. Both bills have been languishing in committee since the spring of 2009, but Senator Reid hopes to attract some Hispanic votes to his struggling re-election campaign by forcing this issue through as part of the defense spending bill. Details on the two bills and related reference articles can be found here:
http://www.opencongress.org/bill/111-h1751/show and http://www.opencongress.org/bill/111-s729/show

It’s unclear at this time if Reid has the necessary votes to attach these two amendments. That means that your calls and faxes can have a very positive effect on the process. Please contact your two Senators and let them know that issues as serious as immigration and Don’t Ask/Don’t Tell policies deserve to be openly debated and voted on, not snuck through in the dark as riders to a must-pass bill. Also contact your Member of Congress to let them know to oppose this trickery in the House as well. Contact information for your Senators and Member of Congress can be found here:  Online Congressional Directory

Then, please call Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell at 202-224-2541 and/or email him (click here), Fax: (202) 224-2499 (Washington D.C. Office) and insist he organize the Republican caucus to oppose these amendments. Let Congress know that while we support our troops they cannot be held hostage to pass unpopular legislation. Harry Reid is counting on your silence to allow him to play his parliamentary tricks in secret to benefit his re-election campaign. Don’t let him get away with it – please make your voice heard!

Jim DeGraffenreid
Douglas County Republican Central Committee Legislative Chair

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