Sens. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina and Dick Durbin of Illinois announced on Thursday that they plan to introduce a bipartisan bill that aims to grant legal status and a path to citizenship to children of undocumented immigrants brought to the United States illegally.
The two lawmakers are reviving the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program that has been previously introduced in the Senate but faces legal challenges in court.
During his term, Barack Obama pushed for the legislation, which provides temporary relief from deportation to the children of illegal immigrants who are also known as DREAMers.
But the Trump White House longer considers this as a priority.
Graham, a Republican, said he appreciates Trump’s commitment to deport “bad hombres” out of the country, but urged him and other GOP members to treat law-abiding immigrants, especially children who were brought by their parents here, “fairly.”
The proposal comes as the DACA program faces a legal challenge from 10 states including Texas. Department of Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly has indicated that he will not defend DACA in court.
The Daily Caller reports:
“These young people have lived in America since they were children and built their lives here,” Graham said in a statement. “We should not squander these young people’s talents and penalize our own nation. Our legislation would allow these young people – who grew up in the United States – to contribute more fully to the country they love.”