DREAM Act Archives - Colorado Politics
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Joey BunchJoey BunchDecember 7, 20173min1630

Metropolitan State University of Denver is putting on a roundtable Thursday for Colorado business and community leaders to talk about the economic benefit of immigrants covered by DACA.

The discussion is part of a broader national campaign to urge Congress to reinstate the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, passed by President Obama to shielded people brought to this country as children from deportation.

President Trump signed an executive order ending the program, but activists, Democrats and even otherwise conservative business leaders are urging Congress to reinstate the so-called Dream Act.

The program allowed an estimated 690,000 immigrants brought to this country as children to receive two-year renewal work permits, including about 17,000 in Colorado.

The iMarch, as it’s called, is in Room 440A3 of the Student Success Building at Metro State on the Auraria Campus in Denver.

The iMarch for Immigration Campaign is a national day of local events in all 50 states, organizers said.

iMarch will highlight the voices of leaders in the business, agriculture, education, tech, and faith sectors, and the support of state and local elected officials.

The Denver speakers are slated to be:

  • Jeff Wasden, president of the Colorado Business Roundtable
  • Janine Davidson, president of Metro State University
  • Chad Vorthman, executive vice president of the Colorado Farm Bureau

The event is supported by the New American Economy, the Colorado Business Roundtable and Voto Latino.

Colorado Politics has told you about the work of the New American Economy before. The national coalition of more than 500 Republican, Democratic and independent mayors and business leaders is urging Congress to act on comprehensive immigration reform for the sake of the economy.

“Coalition members include mayors of more than 35 million people nationwide and business leaders of companies that generate more than $1.5 trillion and employ more than 4 million people across all sectors of the economy, from agriculture to aerospace, hospitality to high tech and media to manufacturing,” the organization said in a statement.

The Colorado Business Roundtable advocates for business-supportive legislation in the state and across the West, working with industries, chambers of commerce, educational institutions and government leaders.

“Our goal is to improve the business environment, increase effectiveness and expand the reach of our partners,” the organization states.


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David O. WilliamsDavid O. WilliamsDecember 2, 20178min207
With Republicans dreaming of a tax bill in their stockings by the holidays, business leaders are still hoping for a clean Dream Act by Christmas. And so are the immigrants shielded from deportation by the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program. But Colorado business leaders are still optimistic Congress will pass the bipartisan Dream Act, […]

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Joey BunchJoey BunchNovember 22, 20173min6901

Wait, what? It’s not unusual for protestors to gather at the offices of senators, but it gets your attention when DACA activists do so at the office of Michael Bennet.

Bennet has been a champion for immigration reform and just last month signed a letter to the Department of Homeland Security seeking to shield information about those in the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrival program.

Heck, Bennet sponsored the Dream Act.

But now activists want him and 25 other Democrats to refuse to pass the federal budget, risking a government shutdown, unless it contains a measure to reinstate the Dream Act.

Dreamers, organized by the Colorado Immigration Rights Coalition, set up a Thanksgiving table with empty chairs outside Bennet’s office with a sign that said, “Is this my next Thanksgiving?”

“If a Dream Act does not pass before the end of 2017, the chances of the bill passing are significantly diminished, and puts hundreds of thousands of Dreamers at risk of deportation,” the Colorado coalition said. “It also places Dreamers in a precarious situation where a “dirty” Dream Act with draconian immigration security measures will be the only option for Dreamer legalization. This would effectively put their families at risk of deportation in exchange for legal status.”

The organization said Colorado is home to 17,000 DACA recipients, who could face deportation.

“An American Dream without my family is a nightmare,” Dreamer Mateo Lozano said in a statement.

Politico reported Thursday that House Speaker Paul Ryan told reporters that there was no need to address DACA now because the program doesn’t expire until March under a six-month timeline spelled out by President Donald Trump’s executive order.

Senate Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi vowed, “We will not leave here without the DREAM Act passing, with a DACA fix.” Politico said Pelosi added, “We’re not kicking the can down to March.”

A study by the conservative CATO Institute this year suggested abandoning DACA could cost the overall U.S. economy $200 billion over the next decade.

“These workers, most of whom are in their 20s and hitting their peak earnings years, would end up not finishing college and taking jobs in the underground economy, earning much less and probably not paying any taxes at all,” CATO Institute Fellow Ike Brannon said on CNBC.


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Joey BunchJoey BunchOctober 4, 20174min3630

U.S. Sen. Cory Gardner had a hard time getting his point across over liberal opponents in a series of town halls this summer, but Friday morning he’ll try again in Pueblo.

The Republican from Yuma announced Wednesday morning he will meet with constituents at the Pueblo Convention Center from 9:30 to 11 a.m. The doors open at 8:30 a.m.

“Constituents are encouraged to arrive early, as space is limited,” Gardner’s office said in a statement.

The Pueblo Convention Center seats about 1,300. The hall is located at 320 Central Main St.

Gardner was grilled on health care and the Trump agenda, in general, during town hall meetings in Durango, Colorado Springs, Greeley, Lakewood and Grand Junction last summer. Those town halls came after Democrats and other opponents staged a series of protests calling for him to hold a town hall meeting to explain his positions.

Gardner has supported failed Republican efforts to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act, and he has been a leading voice in the Senate calling for an appropriate response to the nuclear threats posed by North Korea.

Last month in Summit County he spoke about the need for tax reform, the latest item on the GOP’s stalled agenda under President Bush, and to relieve traffic congestion on Interstate 70.

Gardner also is likely to get questions, if not anti-GOP protests, over President Trump’s plan to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. Gardner, who chairs the National Republican Senatorial Committee, however, has supported the Dream Act. He and fellow Colorado Sen. Michael Bennet, a Democrat from Denver, are co-sponsoring legislation to defend young immigrants and provide a path to citizenship under certain conditions.

“Children who came to this country without documentation, through no fault of their own, must have the opportunity to remain here lawfully,” Gardner said in a statement this month.

Pueblo is considered in play, after being a Democratic stronghold for decades. Last year, Pueblo County went for President Trump, the first Republican presidential candidate to win there since Richard Nixon outpolled George McGovern there in 1972.

Gardner lost to incumbent Sen. Mark Udall by less that half a percentage point in Pueblo County in 2014.