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Rivera Introduces Military-Only Version of DREAM Act

Posted: Jan 27, 2012

WASHINGTON — The Miami Herald reported Friday that Rep. David Rivera, R-Miami, introduced a bill that would provide a path to citizenship to young people who serve in the military. The “Adjusted Residency for Military Service Act,” or ARMS Act, is a limited version of the DREAM Act. While the DREAM Act would grant legal status to qualifying undocumented high school graduates who are enrolled in college or the military, the ARMS Act would only apply to those who serve in the military.

Ali Noorani, executive director of the National Immigration Forum, criticized the legislation and the timing of the bill. “The introduction of the ARMS Act legislation during the Florida primary debate is politics at the expense of policy," he said in a statement. "We expect Florida voters to see right through this effort and demand better.”

“In the words of military expert Margaret Stock," he said, "‘A military-only DREAM Act would also contradict the fundamental premise of the All-Volunteer Force, as many DREAM Act beneficiaries would be motivated to join the military out of a desperate desire to legalize their status, and not because they are truly interested in military service.’”

“By denying immigrant students the right to higher education," Noorani added, "America is losing out on their entrepreneurship, productivity and economic contributions.”

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