An amendment sponsored by Sen. Richard Blumenthal is among hundreds of proposed changes to the landmark immigration bill, which Blumenthal and other senators on the Judiciary Committee will meet to markup Thursday.
Blumenthal’s measure, the “Little DREAMers” amendment, would entitle undocumented immigrant children who are too young under the current proposal to qualify for the DREAM Act provisions to a five-year path to citizenship.
“The Senate’s bipartisan immigration legislation…should not exclude the littlest DREAMers – children brought to this country through no fault of their own who are too young to qualify for the five-year pathway to citizenship that the DREAM Act provides,” said Blumenthal.
The bill’s current provisions for the Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors Act – versions of which have been introduced in Congress for over a decade but failed to gain passage – provides a quick path to citizenship for students who entered the country at a young age, if they pursue an education or serve in the military. Youth who have not yet graduated from high school would not be covered under these provisions and would thus be required to follow the same path to citizenship as adults, which involves a much longer wait. The amendment Sen. Blumenthal introduced expands the DREAM Act provisions to include students under the age of 18.