A defining issue of the presidential election has been immigration, largely due to Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump’s controversial proposal to halt illegal immigration to the U.S. by building a wall on the Mexico–U.S. border.
Immigration is an issue that the Oberlin community has also made a priority, though in a far different direction than Trump: In 2014, Oberlin made the decision to consider undocumented students as domestic, rather than international, applicants, making an Oberlin education far more accessible to them. Oberlin students understand the importance of a multicultural society and embrace opportunities to engage with people of different identities and backgrounds.
Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton has a plan for comprehensive immigration reform that will support the millions of immigrants currently living in this country, as well as the millions more who will come in the future. Her plan creates a path to citizenship that will allow full and equal access to this country’s opportunities for those who want them. She believes that we cannot rest until immigrants and refugees in the U.S. are afforded the dignity and respect they deserve.
Unfortunately, any discussion of immigration in the presidential campaign has largely been defined by Trump’s racist rhetoric. It is important to remember, however, that Clinton’s plan for substantive immigration reform is powerful, effective, compassionate and warrants discussion and recognition.
Clinton has been fighting for immigration reform for decades. As a New York senator, she co-sponsored the SOLVE Act, a 2004 immigration reform bill, and supported the Comprehensive Immigration Reform Act in 2006 and 2007. She also co-sponsored the proposed DREAM Act in 2003, 2005 and 2007, which would have granted partial and then full residency for young undocumented immigrants. As Secretary of State, Clinton publicly renewed her support for progressive immigration legislation, declaring that the State Department under her lead was “committed to comprehensive immigration reform.”
By Nathan Carpenter for THE OBERLIN REVIEW
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