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Illegal Alien Youths—"Dreamers"—Are Actively Involved in Get-out-the-Vote Campaign
Illegal alien youth of the "Dreamer" demographic are actively involved in a Get-Out-The-Vote campaign aimed at Latinos and immigrant. Hmm, who do you think these Latinos and immigrants are going to vote for?
Why do we allow this?
According to the Wall Street Journal:
Thousands of illegal-immigrant youths are at the forefront of national efforts to get immigrant and Latino citizens to the polls next week, the latest demonstration of the increasingly organized and vocal group's power.
In swing states like Florida, Ohio and Colorado, the young people—often referred to as Dreamers after the failed Dream Act legislation that would have offered them a path to citizenship—are running phone banks, going door to door and approaching students on college campuses to encourage voting. They also are active in California, a Democratic stronghold, and Texas, where Republicans have the edge.
The group is targeting Latinos, the fastest-growing electorate in the U.S., whose turnout at the polls is traditionally lower than that of blacks and whites. Polls show an overwhelming advantage for President Barack Obama among Latino voters, but the Dreamers efforts also could boost Democratic support in state and congressional races, supporters and opponents agree.
"They are winning the hearts and minds of Coloradans through their efforts," said Julien Ross, executive director of the Colorado Immigrant Rights Coalition, which has enlisted hundreds of Dreamers in nonpartisan voter-registration and canvassing drives in the state.
The group pushed the Obama administration to adopt a new policy, called Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, that allows those under the age of 31 who arrived in the U.S. by age 16 and have lived here for the last five year to apply for a renewable two-year reprieve from deportation and work permit.
Leydy Mendoza, a 20-year-old undocumented college student in Des Moines, Iowa, has traveled across Iowa to register Hispanics who have flocked to the state in recent years to work in meatpacking plants. She said it resulted in thousands of people registering to vote.
Campaigning by illegal immigrants isn't against the law. Still, the Dreamers' activism is frowned upon in some quarters. "For people who aren't supposed to be in the country in the first place to be deployed for partisan advantage is the last straw," said Dan Stein, president of the Federation for American Immigration Reform, which supports a curb on all immigration. He added: "The strategic deployment" of illegal immigrants who benefit from the Obama administration program is a "corruption of the political process."
Astrid Silva, a Las Vegas college student brought illegally from Mexico when she was four years old, is typical of the activists. She has been volunteering four hours daily at a phone bank. "We don't tell people who to vote for," said Ms. Silva, co-founder of a local organization called Dream Big Vegas. "But we make it clear that immigration matters to our community."
On college campuses in Florida and Ohio, Dreamers have been approaching students gathered in cafeterias and clubs to share their personal stories and ask young voters to support candidates who care about immigrant and gay rights. The majority say they plan to support Democratic candidates.
"We can't vote but we can get people to vote who support our issues. It's our way to participate in this democracy," said Felipe Sousa-Rodriguez of Brazil, who is supervising the joint effort by United We Dream, a national undocumented youth network, and GetEQUAL, a gay-rights group, in both states.
In San Antonio, Maria Fernanda Cabello has knocked on about 10,000 doors in Latino neighborhoods where turnout has been low in the past. "We have to knock on all these doors again as the election approaches," she said.
Undocumented Youth Work to Boost Latino Vote Miriam Jordan, Wall Street Journal, Oct. 31st, 2012