Frank Sharry to House Republicans: Sign the Discharge Petition and Compel a Floor Vote
Washington, DC – Yesterday, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) signed a discharge petition on behalf of the Dream Act, noting,
If House Republicans gave the bipartisan Dream Act an up-or-down vote, we know it would pass. Our nation’s patriotic young Dreamers are an inspiration to us all, and Congress has a moral responsibility to defend them by immediately passing the bipartisan Dream Act.
If a majority of House members sign the discharge petition, House Speaker Paul Ryan will be forced to hold an up-or-down floor vote. If so, a clean Dream Act will surely pass.
According to Frank Sharry, Executive Director of America’s Voice Education Fund,
Many Republicans have stated that they support the Dream Act or something like it. But unless Speaker Ryan is compelled to bring the Dream Act to the floor for a vote, it may never see the light of day. We remember too well that in 2013 the Senate approved immigration reform legislation on a bipartisan basis by a margin of 68-32, only to see then Speaker Boehner – who supported immigration reform – refuse to bring it up for a vote in the House. In the end, Speaker Boehner decided to placate the nativists in his caucus rather than bring up legislation that enjoyed majority support in his chamber. Speaker Ryan now faces a similar situation: bring up a bill that will surely pass or pander to the hardliners in hopes of avoiding growing talk of a challenge to his speakership. The moment of truth has arrived: Republicans either sign the discharge petition to compel a House vote, or their talk of wanting to protect Dreamers will be exposed as just that – talk.
Legislation to protect Dreamers is very popular with the public, including Republicans:
- In the new Washington Post/ABC News poll, 86% of Americans, including 75% of Republicans, back an approach allowing Dreamers to stay in the U.S.
- In the new Harvard-Harris poll, 77% of Americans, including 66% of Republicans, back citizenship for Dreamers.
- In the most recent Politico/Morning Consult poll, 73% of Americans, including 70% of Republicans, support either citizenship or legalization for Dreamers.
Added Sharry, “The people of our country, from across the political spectrum, want Congress to enact legislation that formally recognizes Dreamers as the Americans they already are. On the Dream Act, it’s time for House Republicans to walk the walk and not just talk the talk. Sign the discharge petition and the Dream Act will be approved by the House of Representatives. The time for action is now.”
Follow Frank Sharry and America’s Voice Education Fund on Twitter: @FrankSharry and @AmericasVoice
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