Rep. Cárdenas: “Durbin-Graham Bill Protects Dreamers and Prevents Economic Setback”
WASHINGTON, DC -- Congressman Tony Cárdenas (D-San Fernando Valley) released the following statement in response to the introduction of legislation by Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Lindsey Graham (R-SC) to create a provisional protected presence that would shield DACA recipients from deportation:
“I commend Senator Durbin and Senator Graham for their work on the BRIDGE Act. I am optimistic about a plan to ensure that individuals who were brought to this country as young children, through no fault of their own, have the opportunity to remain in the United States, their home.
“American economists have universally argued for years that immigrants boost opportunity for all Americans, and that immigration reform would supercharge our economy. DACA recipients are a perfect example. 9 in 10 DACA recipients over 18 have a high school education, and by some estimates ending the DACA program would cost the economy $433 billion. They are creative and entrepreneurial, and are eager to work to build up the country they love and call home.
“I am fortunate to represent many DACA recipients and families of DACA recipients in the San Fernando Valley. Their drive inspires me to continue working towards comprehensive immigration reform that will fix our precarious and dysfunctional immigration system. They are not the only ones who are worried about the potential policies of a president-elect who has been openly hostile towards immigrants in this country.
“Our best chance to keep our economy moving forward is to reform our immigration system. In the absence of Congress coming together to draft comprehensive legislation, I am encouraged that Senators Durbin and Graham have proactively offered this solution in the BRIDGE Act. I look forward to voting on this legislation when it comes to the floor of the House, and urge Republican leadership to face the economic reality, for the sake of American families, set aside political rhetoric and take a seat at the immigration reform negotiating table.”
Over the past week, Congressman Cárdenas and his colleagues have sent several letters to President Obama urging him to defend DACA by protecting DREAMers and their families, particularly their personal information; prohibit the use of DACA information for other purposes; and pardon DACA recipients.