The Republicans, it seems, are determined to drive their respectability and electability into the ground. Three times last week, they pushed for votes on the DHS funding bill passed by the House, which unfortunately contains riders that would end DACA and DAPA — maximizing the deportations of DREAMers and immigrant parents. National security funding is too important to risk, but that’s where Senate Republicans are making their stand anyway. Republicans are trying to pass the legislation like a hot potato between House and Senate leadership — but what they need to do is stop attacking immigrants and just pass a clean DHS funding bill already.
Sen. Richard Durbin has been taking to the Senate floor to lift up DACA stories — the successes of young immigrants across the nation who are living the American Dream because of executive action. Inexplicably, these are the young people whom the Republicans want to deport. Today, Sen. Durbin told the story of Nelson and Jhon Magdaleno, were brought to the United States from Venezuela when Nelson was 11 and Jhon was 9.
They were both honors students at their high school in Georgia. Jhon was the 4th highest ranking officer and Commander of the Air Honor Society in Junior ROTC.
Nelson and Jhon both went on to the Georgia Institute of Technology, one of the most selective engineering schools in America. In 2012, Nelson graduated from Georgia Tech with honors with a major in computer engineering. President Obama established the DACA program shortly after Nelson graduated from college. Thanks to DACA, Nelson has been working since 2012 as a computer engineer for a Fortune 500 semiconductor company.
Jhon also received DACA in 2012, while he was still a student at Georgia Tech. He then worked for two years as a researcher in a biomedical engineering lab at Georgia Tech researching glaucoma, one of the leading causes of blindness. In 2014, Jhon graduated from Georgia Tech with a major in Chemical and Biomedical Engineering with highest honors. He is now working as a process engineer with a Fortune 500 company.
In a letter to Sen. Durbin, Nelson wrote:
To me DACA means an opportunity to be able to live my dreams and contribute to society in ways that I could not have imagined. DACA means that one of my life goals, owning my own company, could be a possibility in the future. DACA means a chance. DACA means the American Dream.
In a letter to Sen. Durbin, Jhon wrote:
I consider an American to be someone who loves, and wholeheartedly dedicates themselves to the development of this country. From age nine, I have made the United States my home, and it has made me the man I am today. I proudly call myself an American.
Why are Republicans trying to deport DREAMers like the Magdaleno brothers, who are Americans in all but name?
Watch Sen. Durbin highlighting their story on the Senate floor: