Durbin Continues To Press Republican Congress To Pass The Dream Act By The End Of The Year
Marks 100th Dreamer Story That Durbin Has Told On The Senate Floor
WASHINGTON—Three months after the Trump Administration’s September 5th announcement that it will rescind the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, U.S. Senate Democratic Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL) again came to the Senate floor to call on Republican leaders in Congress to pass the bipartisan Dream Act before the end of the year. More than 11,000 Dreamers have already lost their DACA status, and beginning early next year, 1,000 additional young people will lose their protection from deportation each day.
During his speech, Durbin shared the story of one Dreamer – Kyungmin Cho, who was just seven years old when his family brought him from Seoul, South Korea to the United States. Last year, Kyungmin enlisted in the army, through the Military Accessions Vital to National Interest program, known as MAVNI, and is now waiting to ship off to basic training. Kyungmin is the 100th Dreamer whose story Durbin has told on the Senate floor over the years. Other Dreamer stories are available here.
“Will we be a stronger country if we lose this kind of courage and this kind of commitment of a young man willing to risk his life for a country that does not legally recognize him as part of its population?” asked Durbin. “We shouldn’t do to this young man and to the thousands of others who count on us the unacceptable and walk away from our responsibility. Now is the time – before the end of the year – to let this young man know that when he’s called to serve our country, and proudly do so, we have done everything we can to clear his path.”
Video of Durbin’s remarks on the Senate floor are available here.
Audio of Durbin’s remarks on the Senate floor is available here.
Footage of Durbin’s remarks on the Senate floor is available here for TV Stations.
Kyungmin grew up in Palisades Park, New Jersey. From a young age, he excelled in his studies and was active in his community. In high school, he took multiple Advanced Placement courses, was Vice President of the National Honor Society, and President of his class. In high school, Kyungmin was also a member of the math and science academy, and a member of the Varsity track and field team. He was also a volunteer at his church, where he taught summer school. At the same time, he was working over 40 hours a week at a restaurant to help support his family.
Kyungmin is now a student at Temple University’s Fox School of Business. He is studying accounting in the honors program. He continues to work two restaurant jobs for nearly 40 hours a week to support his family. Last year, Kyungmin enlisted in the army, through the Military Accessions Vital to National Interest program, known as MAVNI. The MAVNI program allows immigrants with skills that are “vital to the national interest” to enlist in the Armed Forces. More than 900 DACA recipients with these critical skills have joined the military through MAVNI. Kyungmin, along with many other Dreamers, is now waiting to ship off to basic training. He continues his undergraduate studies and is working full time while waiting for his chance to serve the country he loves.
In July, Durbin and Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) introduced the bipartisan Dream Act, which would allow immigrant students who grew up in the United States to earn lawful permanent residence and eventually American citizenship. These young people, known as Dreamers, have lived in America since they were children, built their lives here, and are American in every way except for their immigration status.
Previous Article Next Article