Dream Amnesty Elitist Dream
By Joe Guzzardi
As expected, the U.S. House of Representatives passed H.R. 6, the American Dream and Promise Act (DREAM). Soon the Senate will consider the bill which would grant legal status to about 3 million illegal aliens who claim – an allegation that will never be fact checked – to have entered the country when they were 19 or younger.
The amnesty bill also addresses 300,000 illegal aliens from Honduras, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Syria, Nepal, Burma, Sudan, South Sudan, Haiti, Venezuela and Yemen who have received Temporary Protected Status (TPS). Finally, the amnesty package includes illegal immigrants with Deferred Enforced Departure (DED), an immigration benefit that affords the unlawfully present an administrative stay of removal designated for a specific time.
DREAM would be a boon for its recipients who will get lifetime valid work permits, and a host of other affirmative benefits which would also be effective for the duration of their lives. Others who profit are cheap labor-addicted employers, immigration lawyers and immigration expansion advocates. Apple Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook, for example, is all-in. In a tweet, Cook urged Congress to pass the bill on behalf of the 450 DREAMers that Apple employs. Those Apple DREAMers displace or deny American tech workers and recent U.S. tech grads high-paying white-collar jobs.
But tens of millions of working-class Americans get nothing from DREAM except more job competition, and an increasingly overcrowded nation that further deteriorates already-dire public classroom seating capacity and emergency room hospital care conditions. Those specific types and classes of immigration admissions – DREAM, TPS and DED – will by 2031 conservatively add at least 3.2 million more residents to the U.S. population.
In another sobering study, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office predicted that the DREAM/TPS/DED amnesty would cost taxpayers $35 billion during the next decade. The amnestied aliens would become eligible for the Affordable Care Act and Medicaid tax credits as well as the earned income and child tax credits, an aggregate of about $42.5 billion in new federal government expenditures. However, the new green card holders would only generate about $7.5 billion in revenues, mostly from corporate income and Medicare taxes, and the nonrefundable portion of health insurance tax credits.
The method through which amnesty contributes to soaring population is explainable in two words: chain migration, another immigration albatross that Congress refuses to end. As soon as DREAM amnestied illegal immigrants become 21-year-old citizens, they can petition for their parents, who broke the law in the first place, to get them into the U.S. Hence, the chief immigration lawbreaking perpetrators, the parents, will ultimately be rewarded. More troubling eventualities: through chain migration, the amnestied youths will ultimately become anchors, paving the endless path for lawful permanent residency and lifetime work authorization for their aunts, uncles, cousins and grandparents. Using Census Bureau data, the Pew Hispanic Center identified immigration – immigrants and their U.S. born children and grandchildren – as the nation’s leading population driver that, left unchecked, will contribute 82 percent of the anticipated 117 million U.S. residents’ increase by 2050.
For the more than two decades that the Dreamer’s lead advocate, Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL), has insisted that young aliens should not be punished by, because of their parents’ crimes, imposing perpetual illegal immigrant status on them. In 2021, in yet another attempt to put DREAMers on a citizenship pathway, Durbin called for ending the filibuster which, with the Senate’s 60-yea vote requirement, blocked his previously failed efforts.
But the true reason DREAM hasn’t passed in the last 20 years is because it’s bad, elitist-written legislation designed to benefit illegally present foreign nationals and profiteers, but that harms mainstream Americans. Concerned citizens have consistently rejected DREAM. Their consensus is that giving existing immigrants the authority to choose future immigrants without considering what the newcomers may contribute to the common national interest, as DREAM Act-sponsored chain migration does, is self-defeating and risky business.
Joe Guzzardi is a Progressives for Immigration Reform analyst who has written about immigration for more than 30 years. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.