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Thursday, December 2, 2010

New Dream Act Proposed, Benefits Restricted, Fewer Quality

Article originally published as New Dream Act Restricts Benefits, on Technorati by Tim Paynter

"This may go down as the greediest generation in history!" - Alan Simpson

Erskine B. Bowles (left)  Alan Simpson (right) from Outside the Beltway

Yesterday, the Republican Caucus signed a "No Vote Pact" in which members refused to vote on any legislation not related to continuing the unfunded tax cuts to the wealthiest people in America. The Republican Caucus flatly rejected Obama Administration offers to extend the Bush era tax cuts to the first $250,000 in income insisting those who have taxable income of a million dollars get the cuts.

Meanwhile, criticism of the Dream Act, which allows children of undocumented immigrants a chance to go to college or serve in the military, was considered by those who support the Act. In response, a new version of the Dream Act severely limiting the benefits to undocumented youth has been drafted and will be available for review as Senate Bill 3999.

lame duck

The new version of the bill precludes youth of undocumented workers from gaining access to public benefits including health care, welfare and in-state tuition. The provision will also prevent youth of undocumented workers from gaining access to certain scholarship benefits, hence insuring they will not be in competition with US citizens.

At the same time, the bill narrows who qualifies for the Act. Before, students under the age of 35 qualified. Now, only those under the age of 30 will quality. The bill already requires student immigrants to prove he they have been in the US at least five years prior to the date the Act, hence preventing “new arrivals” from taking advantage of the law. Finally, stronger language was placed into the law requiring students pass a criminal background check.

The Republican "No Vote Pact" is designed to guarantee multi-millionairs line their pockets with tax cuts while the rest of the country contemplates a reduced standard of living. In addition to holding up the Dream Act, Republicans are barring consideration of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" and the Start Treaty to reduce nuclear proliferation unless the tax cuts are approved. Senator Alan Simpson (R-WY) who co-chairs the National Committee On Fiscal Responsibility and Reform weighed in on the matter saying, "this may go down as the greediest generation in history".

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