Originally published by The Hill
Democratic National Committee (DNC) Chairman Tom Perez on Monday pressed Congress to pass the DREAM Act, as the deadline for lawmakers to craft a legislative fix for the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program passes.
Perez in a statement said Trump’s rescinding of DACA, an Obama-era program that shielded immigrants brought to the U.S. illegally as children from deportation, caused “an unnecessary crisis.”
“It’s time for Trump and Republicans in Congress to stop holding Dreamers hostage and work with Democrats to pass the DREAM Act,” Perez said, referring to legislation that would grant certain immigrants a path to citizenship.
Trump last year announced that he would end the DACA program, but provided Congress with six months to put together a legislative fix. That deadline is Monday, March 5.
“Without a permanent solution, Trump’s cruel and reckless decision will tear more families apart, shatter communities, drive immigrants into the shadows, and make us all less safe as a result,” Perez said in his plea for lawmakers to pass a bill.
“These are our neighbors and friends, our classmates and co-workers. They are American in every way but on paper, and they deserve the chance to stay in the country they call home.”
Democrats pushed for DACA protections during spending negotiations earlier this year, but the action on immigration appears to have reached a standstill in Congress.