This morning, in a procedural vote requiring 60 votes to advance the legislation, the U.S. Senate voted for the DREAM Act by a 55-41 margin, effectively shutting the doors of opportunity to thousands of bright and talented young people who grew up in America and wanted to give back to the country they call home.
The following is a statement from Frank Sharry, Executive Director of America’s Voice:
“Today we won a majority of votes in the Senate. Last week we won a majority of the votes in the House. But because of a Republican filibuster we needed 60 votes to pass DREAM and we fell short.
To those who did the right thing and voted for DREAM, you had our back and we’ll have yours. But to the majority of Republicans and the handful of Democrats who voted against the best and the brightest of the Latino immigrant community, your vote against DREAM will be remembered as long as you are in politics. Many of you have expressed your sympathy for the DREAMers. But today we did not need your sympathy. We needed your vote.
As disappointed as we are in those who slammed the door of opportunity on talented young people who are Americans in all but paperwork, we are buoyed by the nationwide outpouring of support for this cause, the unprecedented mobilization in support of DREAM across the nation, and the leadership and courage of the DREAMers who came to Washington to insist on making their DREAM come true.
Where do we go from here? We will continue fighting, organizing, mobilizing and educating. We will continue to build an ever more powerful movement. We will continue to speak up and speak out for immigrant youth, for immigrant families, for immigration reform that embodies the best of our ideals rather than the worst of our fears.
We get stronger every day. We may have lost this battle, but in the war between justice and injustice, inclusion and exclusion, courage and cowardice, victory is not a matter of if, but a matter of when.”