As DREAM Act supporters get ready for yet another action on Wednesday in Miami, they are getting support from Miami Republicans.
The Sun-Sentinel‘s Florida Politics reports:
While a conservative resurgence this year has discouraged prospects for immigration reform, Cuban-American Republicans from Miami are swimming against the tide by backing a bill that would give a break to the children of illegal immigrants.
Reform advocates this week touted comments by Republican U.S. Reps. Lincoln Diaz-Balart and Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, Cuban-Americans from Miami, in support of the proposed DREAM Act. The bill would allow immigrant children to remain in this country to serve in the military and attend college.
In March 2009, Diaz Balart and Ros-Lehtinen, who have supported immigration reform throughout their legislative careers, cosponsored the U.S. House version of the DREAM Act.
In the recent midterm elections, Hispanic voters in Florida supported GOP candidates Marco Rubio and Rick Scott despite the fact that Scott openly supported an Arizona-type immigration enforcement law for Florida.
While two thirds of Latinos voted Democratic in other states, a Pew Hispanic Center report shows that more than half (55 percent) of Florida Hispanic voters supported Republican U.S. Senate candidate Rubio over independent Charlie Crist (23 percent) and Democrat Kendrick Meek (21 percent).
According to that same report, released on Nov. 3, in the governor’s race, 48 percent of Hispanic voters supported Democrat Alex Sink and half (50 percent) supported Republican Rick Scott.
The report states, “Overall, Rubio’s share of the Hispanic vote was just five-percentage-points higher than Scott’s share of the Hispanic vote. The Hispanic vote in Florida has traditionally tilted more Republican than in other states, owing largely to the presence of the GOP-leaning Cuban-American community.”
Despite the fact that Republicans in the U.S. Senate filibustered the DREAM Act in September, over the last week DREAM Act supporters pressed U.S. Senate leader Democrat Harry Reid to present the bill in the chamber’s lame-duck session. From a press release issued on Tuesday:
“We want to make sure that Senator Reid presents the DREAM Act in the Lame-Duck Session as he committed publicly to do,” comments Rosa Mosqueira, a [Students working for Equal Rights] leader and an undocumented student herself. “Since last week, students across the country have been calling Sen. Reid and asking him to keep his promise, and some of our leaders already went to Washington D.C. to represent our DREAMs.”
Students will gather on Wednesday at the Miami-Dade College Inter American campus to push outgoing Sen. George LeMieux, R-Fla., to publicly support the DREAM Act. Despite year-long efforts by Florida students and activists, LeMieux has yet to do so.