Saturday, December 18, 2010
The Senate on Saturday blocked a bill that would create a path to citizenship for certain illegal immigrant students who came to the United States as children, completed two years of college or military service and met other requirements including passing a criminal background check. The vote, 55-41 in favor of the bill, effectively kills the measure for this year, and its fate beyond that is uncertain.
The measure, known as the Dream Act, failed to get the support of 60 senators needed to cut off a filibuster and bring the bill to the floor.
President Obama had personally lobbied lawmakers in support the bill. But Democrats were not able to hold ranks. Among those voting no were the Democrats Max Baucus of Montana, Kay Hagan of North Carolina, Ben Nelson of Nebraska, Mark Pryor of Arkansas and Jon Tester of Montana.
“Thousands of children in American who live in the shadows and dream of greatness,” he said. “they are children who have been raised in this country. They stand in the classrooms and pledge allegiance to our flag. They sing our star-spangled banner as our national anthem. They believe in their heart of hearts this is home. This is the only country they have every know.”
But opponents of the measure said it was too broad and would grant amnesty to illegal immigrants.