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In the 111th Congress, the League lobbied in support of the DREAM (Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors) Act that would provide a path to citizenship for young immigrants who complete a college degree or serve in the military, thereby enabling them to be a fully productive part of American society. The legislation passed the House, but lacked enough votes to overcome a filibuster in the Senate.
Statement of Position on Immigration, as Announced by National Board, April 2008:
The League of Women Voters believes that immigration policies should promote reunification of immediate families; meet the economic, business and employment needs of the United States; and be responsive to those facing political persecution or humanitarian crises. Provision should also be made for qualified persons to enter the United States on student visas. All persons should receive fair treatment under the law.
The League supports federal immigration law that provides an efficient, expeditious system (with minimal or no backlogs) for legal entry of immigrants into the United States.
To complement these goals the League supports federal policies to improve economies, education, job opportunities and living conditions in nations with large emigrating populations.
In transition to a reformed system, the League supports provisions for unauthorized immigrants already in the country to earn legal status
The League supports federal payments to impacted communities to address the financial costs borne by states and local governments with large immigrant populations.
The League supports the following criteria for legal admission of persons into the United States:
The League supports due process for all persons, including the right to a fair hearing, right to counsel, right of appeal and right to humane treatment.
The League supports:
The League also supports programs allowing foreign workers to enter and leave the United States to meet seasonal or sporadic labor needs.
In achieving overall policy goals, the League supports a system for unauthorized immigrants already in the country to earn legal status, including citizenship, by paying taxes, learning English, studying civics and meeting other relevant criteria. While policy reforms, including a path to legal status, remain unachieved, the League does not support deporting unauthorized immigrants who have no history of criminal activity.