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The Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors Act (The "DREAM Act") is a piece of proposed federal legislation in the United States that was first introduced in the United States Senate on August 1, 2001 and most recently re-introduced there and the United States House of Representatives on March 26, 2009. This bill would provide certain inadmissible or deportable alien students who graduate from US high schools, who are of good moral character, arrived in the U.S. as minors, and have been in the country continuously for at least five years prior to the bill's enactment, the opportunity to earn conditional permanent residency if they complete two years in the military or two years at a four year institution of higher learning. The alien students would obtain temporary residency for a six year period. Within the six year period, a qualified student must have "acquired a degree from an institution of higher education in the United States or [have] completed at least 2 years, in good standing, in a program for a bachelor's degree or higher degree in the United States," or have "served in the uniformed services for at least 2 years and, if discharged, [have] received an honorable discharge." Military enlistment contracts require an eight year commitment, with active duty commitments typically between four and six years. "Any alien whose permanent resident status is terminated [according to the terms of the Act] shall return to the immigration status the alien had immediately prior to receiving conditional permanent resident status under this Act." 
3 Legislative History
4 2007 debate
5 2009 re-introduction
8 External links
Non-inspected aliens can only obtain permanent status through their parents. Aside from special provisions for unaccompanied minors there is no independent method to accomplish this. Normally a child brought into the country without immigration visas, would have to first leave the US in order to apply for a permanent visa. Returning to their country of birth would not guarantee a path to a permanent visa. Attempts to return are often difficult, with roadblocks such as three-year to ten-year bans on reentering the U.S.
Members of Congress have introduced several forms of this bill in both the House of Representatives and the Senate. Members in the House have not brought the bill to a floor vote as a stand-alone bill; Senators debated a version of the DREAM Act S.2205 on September 21, 2010. The bill, which required 60 votes to gain cloture, failed on a 52-44 vote, 8 votes short of overcoming a filibuster by senators opposed to the bill.
The United States military faced challenges in enlistment, which in 2005 were described as a "crisis", though the economic downturn of 2007-2010 did away with many of the enlistment challenges. Immigrants who do not have a "green card" are not allowed to enlist. Several senior officials at the Department of Defense have spoken in favor of promising legal status to members of the military as a means of boosting recruitment.
Passage of the Dream Act is one of the Department of Defense's official goals for helping to maintain “a mission-ready, all-volunteer force.” 
According to the 2009 version of the senate bill, DREAM Act beneficiaries must:
Have proof of having arrived in the United States before age 16.
Have proof of residence in the United States for a least five consecutive years since their date of arrival, compliance with Selective Service.
Be between the ages of 12 and 35 at the time of bill enactment.
Have graduated from an American high school or obtained a GED.
Be of "good moral character"
During the first six years, the immigrant would be granted "conditional" status, and would be required to graduate from a two-year community college or complete at least two years towards a 4-year degree, or serve two years in the U.S. military. After the six year period, an immigrant who met at least one of these three conditions would be eligible to apply for legal permanent resident status. During this six year conditional period, immigrants would not be eligible for federal higher education grants such as Pell grants, but they would be able to apply for student loans and work study
If the immigrant did not meet the educational or military service requirement within the six year time period, their temporary residence would be revoked and they could be deported. They also must not commit any crimes other than those considered non-drug related misdemeanors, regardless of whether or not they have already been approved for permanent status at the end of their six years. Being convicted of a major crime, or drug-related infraction would automatically remove the six year temporary residence status and they would be subject to deportation.
If the immigrant met all of the conditions at the end of the 6-year conditional period, they would be granted permanent residency, which would eventually allow them to become U.S. citizens.
An estimated 65,000 illegal immigrant students graduate from high school each year. However, it is not known how many of those were eligible go on to complete the further requirements. It is estimated that currently only 7,000–13,000 college students nationally can fulfill the further obligations.
The bill also restores the option for states to determine residency for purposes of higher education benefits by repealing Section 505 of the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act (IIRIRA) of 1996 (8 U.S.C. 1623). The majority of states interpret this provision as disqualifying unauthorized students from certain higher education benefits such as in-state tuition rates. Some states have enacted laws aimed at making unauthorized state residents eligible for in-state tuition rates without violating this IIRIRA provision. However, some students paying out-of-state tuition have filed lawsuits in these states, claiming state education officials violated this federal law. Repealing this provision would provide states the ability to choose their own residency requirements for higher education benefits.
 Legislative History
A very similar version of the bill, though never called the "DREAM Act", was introduced during the 107th Congress in 2001, as H.R.1918 and S.1291 in the House and Senate respectively. It has been introduced in both the Senate (as the "DREAM Act") and the House (as the "American Dream Act") at various times. In the Senate: S.1545 (108th Congress), S.2075 (109th Congress), S.774 (110th Congress), and S.2205 (110th Congress). In the House: H.R.1684 (108th Congress), H.R.5131 (109th Congress), and H.R.1275 (110th Congress).
The text of the bill was also placed in various other failed immigration-related bills, including the Comprehensive Immigration Reform Act of 2006 (S. 2611) and the Comprehensive Immigration Reform Act of 2007 (S. 1348). With the failure of the "comprehensive reform" bills, Richard Durbin, the chief proponent of the DREAM Act in the Senate, made its passage a top priority for 2007.
In September 2007, Richard Durbin filed to place the DREAM Act as an amendment to the 2008 Department of Defense Authorization Bill (S. 2919). However, three key points were commonly cited in opposition to the DREAM Act. First, the misconception that the bill required states to give in-state tuition to the beneficiaries of the DREAM Act when it only removed ambiguity in a state's right to offer in-state to certain immigrant students, states would not be forced to offer in-state tuition. Second, the legislation did not include an age cap. Finally, the amendment was regarded by opponents as non-germane to defense matters despite the military provision.
In light of the criticism, Richard Durbin tabled the amendment in favor of a rewritten DREAM Act amendment to the Defense Bill. In consideration of their opponents, all language regarding in-state tuition was removed from the amendment and an age cap of 30 was put in place for potential beneficiaries. Military leaders embraced the bill, which included the promise of legal status to members of the military, as a means of boosting recruitment. Nevertheless, the amendment was not brought up for a vote.
On October 18, Richard Durbin, along with Republican co-sponsors Sen. Charles Hagel and Sen. Richard Lugar, introduced the DREAM Act as S.2205. Though nearly identical to the revised amendment to the Defense Bill, opponents continued to cite previous arguments. In order to bring forth the DREAM Act for debate, a vote was scheduled on October 24 that would require a "filibuster proof" count of 60 yes votes, but this was not obtained.
Senate opponents cited a variety of reasons for their opposition. Some labeled the DREAM Act as amnesty that would only encourage further illegal immigration. Others stated that the DREAM Act, though worthy legislation, should only be enacted as part of a comprehensive immigration reform. In light of the Senate’s failure to successfully pass a single appropriations bill, some Senators stated that the DREAM Act was a distraction to more pressing matters and should rather be considered in January 2008. Finally, debate emerged as to the amendment process for the DREAM Act, specifically, how willing the Democratic leadership would be in allowing debate of Republican amendments.
In a surprise move, Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison, who had previously stated that she would oppose consideration of the DREAM Act, announced on the Senate floor that she had expressed reservations to Sen. Durbin and he had made a verbal commitment to work with her to make changes that she saw necessary to garner greater Republican support. In response, Sen. Durbin announced that the first amendment that would be considered, should debate of the DREAM Act begin, would completely re-write the bill in favor of the language that Sen. Hutchison suggested. According to her suggestions, students should be allowed to hold a temporary student visa with a renewable work permit instead of conditional permanent residency. Although 52 Senators voted in favor of considering the DREAM Act, this fell eight votes short of breaking filibuster and the legislation was not considered.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, (D-NV) announced on September 14, 2010 that the DREAM Act will be included as an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2011.
 2007 debate
On Wednesday October 24, 2009 the Senate rejected an attempt to begin a debate on the DREAM Act that would have allowed young immigrant students to pursue higher education and fix their current immigration status. The DREAM Act obtained 52 votes in favor of cloture, eight votes short of the 60 needed to defeat a filibuster.
As of March 6, 2007, the requirements of the Dream Act were as followed:
entered the United States before his or her sixteenth birthday, and has been present in the United States for at least five years immediately preceding enactment of this Act;
is a person of good moral character;
is not inadmissible or deportable under specified grounds of the Immigration and Nationality Act;
at the time of application, has been admitted to an institution of higher education, or has earned a high school or equivalent diploma; and
from the age of 16 and older, has never been under a final order of exclusion, deportation, or removal.
Sets forth the conditions for conditional permanent resident status, including:
termination of status for violation of this Act; and
removal of conditional status to permanent status. Authorizes an alien who has satisfied the
appropriate requirements prior to enactment of this Act to petition the Secretary for conditional permanent resident status. Provides for:
penalties for false application statements;
higher education assistance; and
a Government Accountability Office (GAO) report respecting the number of aliens adjusted under this Act.
 2009 re-introduction
The DREAM Act was re-introduced in both chambers of Congress on Thursday, March 26, 2009. Introducing the bill were Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL), Richard Lugar (R-IN), Harry Reid (D-NV), Mel Martinez (R-FL), Patrick J. Leahy (D-VT), Joseph Lieberman (I-CT), Edward M. Kennedy (D-MA), and Russel D. Feingold (D-WI) and U.S. Representative Howard Berman (D-CA). To date, 128 representatives and 39 senators (not including former Senator Edward Kennedy) have co-sponsored the bill.
Under the new DREAM Act, immigrants may qualify in part, by meeting the following requirements which have not been finalized by Congress:
Must be between the ages of 12 and 35 at the time the Law is enacted
Must have arrived in the United States before the age of 16
Must have resided continuously in the United States for at least five (5) consecutive years since the date of their arrival
Must have graduated from a U.S. High School, or obtained a General Education Diploma GED
Must have "Good moral character"
In addition to the temporary Residency, immigrant students who qualify would also be entitled to apply for student loans and work study, but would not be eligible for Pell educational grants.
In certain circumstances, the immigrant may lose temporary immigration Residency. This may occur if the immigrant does not meet the educational or military service requirement within the six year time period or if they commit any crimes (other than those considered non-drug related misdemeanors) regardless of whether or not they have already been approved for permanent status at the end of their six years. If an immigrant is convicted of a major crime, or drug-related infraction, (except for a single offense of simple possession of 30 grams or less of marijuana) he or she would automatically lose the six year temporary residence status and be immediately subject to deportation.
The DREAM Act, along with a repeal of Don't Ask, Don't Tell, was incorporated into the National Defense Authorization Act for the Fiscal Year 2011. On September 21, 2010, the Senate filibuster of the bill by all Republican senators and one Democrat was maintained in a 56-43 vote; it would have taken 60 votes to stop the filibuster and continue the progress of the bill.
On September 22, 2010, Richard Durbin introduced the bill once again along with Richard Lugar. The total number of cosponsors is 2.
On November 16, 2010, Obama and top Democrats called to introduce the Dream Act into the House by November 29th.
^ http://rs9.loc.gov/cgi-bin/bdquery/z?d107:SN01291:@@@L&summ2=m& Bill Summary & Status 107th Congress (2001 - 2002) S.1291
^ http://thomas.loc.gov/cgi-bin/bdquery/z?d108:S.1545: Senate Version, Section 5(d)
^ DD Form 4, Enlistment/Reenlistment Document - Armed Forces of the United States, October 2007
^ Enlistment Contracts and Enlistment Incentives
^ http://thomas.loc.gov/cgi-bin/bdquery/z?d108:S.1545: Senate Version, Section 5(b)(2)
^ Immigrant Children - Special Immigrant Juvenile Status
^ Entry With or Without Inspection
^ U.S. Senate: Legislation & Records Home > Votes > Roll Call Vote
^ http://www.guardian.co.uk/usa/story/0,12271,1499164,00.html "US lowers standards in army numbers crisis"
^ http://online.wsj.com/article/SB119034142441734839.html?mod=googlenews_wsj Wall Street Journal "Bill Offers U.S. Citizenship for Military Service"
^ a b Library of Congress Web Site unavailable (Library of Congress)
^ What is Good Moral Character?"
^ "DREAM opportunities". Bangor Daily News: pp. 6. 2007-10-09. ISSN 08928738. http://proquest.umi.com.ezproxy.lapl.org/pqdweb?did=1361027251&Fmt=7&clientId=13322&RQT=309&VName=PQD. Retrieved 2009-04-03.
^ DREAM Act National Council of La Raza
^ Lee, Y. (2006). To dream or not to dream: a cost-benefit analysis of the development, relief, and education for alien minors (DREAM) act. Cornell Journal of Law and Public Policy, 16, 231-258
^ Feder, J. (2010). Unauthorized alien students, higher education, and in-state tuition rates: a legal analysis. RS22500. Congressional Research Service.
^ Morse, A. & Bimbach, K. (2010). In-State Tuition and Unauthorized Immigrant Students. National Conference of State Legislatures. Retrieved from http://www.ncsl.org/default.aspx?tabid=13100
^ Spuriell, Stephen (2007-07-10). "Death Knell for Immigration?". The Corner (National Review Online). http://corner.nationalreview.com/post/?q=NmMxMDY4NWY3OWMyNzIxYTliNzI2NWUzYzE5ZGRhM2E=. Retrieved 2007-07-19.
^ Maze, Rick (2007-07-16). "Bill would grant citizenship for service". Army Times. http://www.armytimes.com/news/2007/07/military_servicecitizenship_070716w/. Retrieved 2007-07-19.
^ a b c d Library of Congress Web Site unavailable (Library of Congress)
^ Montgomery, Dave (2007-10-23). "Senate to vote on whether to take up limited immigration bill". Knight Ridder Tribune News Service: 1. http://proquest.umi.com.ezproxy.lapl.org/pqdweb?did=1370680151&Fmt=7&clientId=13322&RQT=309&VName=PQD. Retrieved 2009-04-03.
^ DREAM Act: NILC statement on October 24 Senate vote
^ The DREAM Act will be Included in Defense Authorization Bill According to Harry Reid | The News of Today
^ S.774: DREAM Act of 2007 - U.S. Congress - OpenCongress
^ a b Library of Congress Web Site unavailable (Library of Congress)
^ Library of Congress Web Site unavailable (Library of Congress)
^ "Senate halts 'don't ask, don't tell' repeal". CNN. September 22, 2010. http://www.cnn.com/2010/POLITICS/09/21/senate.defense.bill/index.html?hpt=T1.
^ Library of Congress Web Site unavailable (Library of Congress)
^ Obama And Top Congressional Democrats Call For DREAM Act's Passage Before Year's End
 External links
Yo Soy El Army: Why the Military likes the DREAM Act
Debating the DREAM
The other side of the DREAM Act Debate
DREAM Act Portal - The largest community of undocumented students
DREAM vs. Reality: An Analysis of Potential DREAM Act Beneficiaries
Information from Library of Congress
DREAM Act Endorsers in 2005
United We DREAM Coalition
Harvard College Act On A Dream
In-State Tuition and Unauthorized Immigrant Students
Olivas, Michael A., The Political Economy of the Dream Act and the Legislative Process: A Case Study of Comprehensive Immigration Reform (February 16, 2010). Wayne Law Review, 2010; U of Houston Law Center No. 2010-A-6.
Is DREAM Act a Solution for Millions of Undocumented Youth or a Funnel for Military Recruitment? - video debate by Democracy Now!
Analysis of immigration policies and laws through personal experiences
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