Fading DREAMs

By James R. Edwards, Jr. on November 23, 2010

Oh, the cruelty of leading people on and sowing false hopes. But the Democratic leadership in Congress and the Obama White House keep up the charade with the DREAM Act amnesty.

Before the election, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and Sen. Robert Menendez put out the word that, yes, they had every intention of moving the DREAM Act. It was about as bald-faced a ploy as one could find – the real intention being to boost Latino turnout in the midterms from abysmal to very low.

Of course, somehow DREAM never found its way onto the Senate floor schedule. Heck, it never got onto the House floor calendar, where Democrats had the numbers, the majoritarian rules, and the heavy-handedness to force a vote.

Now that Democrats have lost their House majority and lost ranks in the Senate, the same old dreamy promises are voiced – this time that the DREAM Act will come up in the (busy and rapidly passing) lame-duck session.

But it's clear to anyone with a little bit of judgment that the DREAM Act in all likelihood can't pass both houses of Congress in the post-Thanksgiving session. Sen. Richard Durbin has introduced new versions of the bill, but they are equally unacceptable to those lawmakers with reservations about amnesty.

Only Sen. Richard Lugar has broken ranks with his Republican colleagues in favor of DREAM in the lame duck. Meanwhile, Democratic senators like Ben Nelson of Nebraska are saying they wouldn't vote to break a DREAM filibuster.

The writing is on the wall: The DREAM Act amnesty bill is all but dead. You can't take these things for granted and must remain active and vigilant until Congress finally adjourns. But with the controversy over continuing the past decade's tax rates and the need to move a funding measure to keep the government running, lawmakers don't have much spare time on the floor schedule.

And if the all-Democrat Congress can't move a bill that would legalize those 2 million who purport to have illegally entered the United States as minors (even if it was 20 years ago), how can the pro-amnesty lobby seriously expect to win this legislative battle come January and the 112th Congress?

Topics: DREAM Act