ABC News mentioned that Hillary Clinton is once again running for president, and in Las Vegas she made her intentions clear in terms of immigration and what she feels needs to be done about it. Clinton gave this speech spoke at Rancho High School. She said that there needs to be an immigration reform, and she laid out her plans for such as reform which include a pathway to citizenship. She also made mention of how action needs to be taken, and how she planned to reform detention centers.
In Las Vegas, Clinton seemed to be differentiating herself from Republican nominees by showing her support for a pathway to citizenship. She expressed her belief that creating a pathway to citizenship is key as opposed to just having another class of Americans who can work and reside in the U.S., without the benefits and protection of citizenship. She added that an immigration reform can only strengthen everything such as families, the economy, and even the country. Clinton stressed that there is limited time to put this plan in action, therefore the necessary steps must be taken now.
During her Las Vegas speech Clinton also stated how different she is in terms of viewpoint compared to Republicans. She added that none of them are supporting immigration as she felt they should. Clinton stressed how these immigrants must feel as if they do not belong or have allegiance, and how avoiding this issue will lead to disaster and division. She went on to say that turning against the path to citizenship will divide us further and be opposed to everything the United States stands for and what makes the country unique.
Clinton said that even if an immigration reform is not the first thing she does if elected president, it will be one of the first. She believes this is a top priority. She added that she will fight for an immigration reform and citizenship, and also work to stop people from being unlawfully deported. Clinton also stated that she would keep the DREAMer program going for undocumented parents of United States born children. She wants to protect the rights of these people and help to keep the families together.
Some of the people involved in the DREAMer program have been able to stay in the United States and work temporarily under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program (also known as DACA) and was initiated by Obama in 2012. The president had extended similar protections to additional DREAMers, and he had also made this available to some of the parents of Unites States citizens and legal permanent residents. The courts are currently blocking this but if it is put back into action as many as five million immigrants could gain relief according to The Huffington Post.
Las Vegas’ Rancho High School consists of about 70 percent Hispanic students and with this in mind Clinton’s discussion included young individuals who are eligible for the Dream Act. Review Journal stated that Nevada has about a 30 percent Hispanic population, and there is an estimated 11 million undocumented Hispanics in the United States. In Las Vegas, Clinton spoke of her experience of babysitting immigrant children when she was growing up in Chicago. She added how important family was to these children and how much they loved their family members. She used this story to lead into her point about an immigration reform being primarily focused on family and its importance.
Clinton feels immigration reform is necessary to prevent millions from both being and feeling like second class citizens, as she put it in her speech in Las Vegas. She added that she has seen in other countries what happens when a second status is established for people, and how it causes divisiveness. It also makes people feel like the do not have an allegiance to their country. Clinton’s speech in Las Vegas made her intentions clear, as well as how hard she plans to work for immigration reform if she ends up being elected as president.
By Heather Granruth