The Need for the Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors Act Essay

The Need for the Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors Act Essay

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The Necessity of the DREAM Act
In August of 2001, Republican Senator Orrin Hatch introduced the first iteration of the Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors Act (or, the DREAM Act). It was intended to be a companion bill of sorts to his party-mate Senator Chris Cannon’s Student Adjustment Act of 2001, which had been introduced a few months before. The Student Adjustment Act of 2001 was meant to amend the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act of 1996 so that undocumented immigrants would be eligible for higher education benefits such as in-state tuition in the same way as documented residents of the state in which they lived, and to amend the Immigration and Nationality Act to give permanent resident status to middle or high school students who grew up in the United States, which would qualify them for both Federal and State assistance funds for higher education (Student Adjustment Act, 2001). Hatch’s version of the bill was introduced to Senate and the House of Representatives over and over in the years to come (it was reintroduced in the 108th, 109th, and the 110th Congress) and was tacked on as an amendment to many other bills related to immigration at the time, including the Comprehensive Immigration Reform Acts of 2006 and 2007.
In 2007, Democratic Senator Richard Durbin made a move to add the DREAM Act onto the 2008 Department of Defense Authorization Bill – an action which generated much controversy at the time. Opponents of the DREAM Act as it was written at the time were under the impression that the bill made it mandatory for all states to give in-state tuition to DREAM Act beneficiaries unilaterally. In reality, the DREAM Act was written only allow them to do this if they chose. In-sta...

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Infographic: The 12 States with the Greatest Economic Impact from Passing the DREAM Act. (2012, October 1). Center for American Progress. Retrieved April 4, 2014, from
Odeja, R. H., Takash, P. C., Castillo, G., Flores, G., Monroy, A., & Sargeant, D. (2010, December 1). No DREAMers Left Behind: The Economic Potential of DREAM Act Beneficiaries. No DREAMers Left Behind: The Economic Potential of DREAM Act Beneficiaries. Retrieved April 1, 2014, from
Plyler v. Doe. 102 S.Ct. 2382. (1982). Retrieved from WestLaw Academic Database.
Student Adjustment Act of 2001. H.R.1918. 107th Congress. (2001.) Retrieved from THOMAS Database.

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