Senate ‘Fails to Deliver’ for Immigrant Youth

Press Contact: 

Elliot Levy

Press Contact


New York — In response to votes in the U.S. Senate today on four immigration proposals, all of which failed to pass, Stosh Cotler, CEO of Bend the Arc Jewish Action, released the following statement:

“Yet again, our elected officials have failed to protect the immigrant youth threatened with deportation by President Trump’s rollback of DACA. Three of the bills voted on today would have tied the fate of these Dreamers to an unacceptable escalation of mass deportation and other anti-immigrant policies, pitting Dreamers against their own families. In particular, the bill sponsored by Senator Grassley, which the White House has put its weight behind, is a full-throated, outrageous expression of an agenda of racist, nativist contempt for immigrants. We are also disappointed that Republican Senators overwhelming rejected the USA Act, the one bipartisan bill that would have provided Dreamers a path to citizenship without draconian enforcement measures. And the fact that Republicans even overwhelmingly rejected a proposal by Senators Rounds and King that would have provided tens of millions of dollars for Trump’s wall, while protecting Dreamers, is further proof that their claim that they care about Dreamers is simply not true.

“Every day that Congress fails to pass the Dream Act is a day they ignore the wishes of the American people and put the lives of young immigrants at risk. The American Jewish community demands that our lawmakers take immediate action when they return from recess to protect immigrant youth, and leave behind repulsive proposals that hold them hostage in exchange for the priorities of white nationalists and anti-immigrant extremists. Until Congress passes the narrow, bipartisan solution Dreamers need, American Jews will remain in the streets and in the halls of power saying, ‘Let My People Stay.’”

Bend the Arc Jewish Action is a leader in the American Jewish community in demanding that Congress take action to protect immigrant youth. On January 17th, Bend the Arc Jewish Action organized a historic act of civil disobedience in Washington DC, in which 82 Jewish activists were arrested on the grounds of the U.S. Capitol while demanding a clean Dream Act. Since then, activists from Bend the Arc Jewish Action have organized local “Let My People Stay” actions and protests across the country inspired by this civil disobedience, including in New York, Illinois, California and Massachusetts.