September 14th, 2010
05:55 PM ET
12 years ago

Reid adds controversial immigration measure to defense bill

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="Harry Reid said he will add the DREAM Act to a defese policy bill next week."]

Washington (CNN) - Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said Tuesday he will add the DREAM Act, a controversial immigration measure, to a defense policy bill the Senate will take up next week.

The decision means the defense bill, which often passes with bipartisan support, will be home to two major, thorny political issues – the other being the repeal of the military's "don't ask, don't tell" policy.

Reid called the DREAM Act "really important" and said it should be passed because it provides a path to citizenship for young illegal immigrants who go to college or serve in the military. DREAM is an acronym for Development, Relief and Education of Alien Minors Act.

"I know we can't do comprehensive immigration reform," Reid said at a news conference. "But those Republicans we had in the last Congress have left us."

Many Hispanic voters are angry with Democratic leaders for not doing more to pass an immigration overhaul. The decision by Reid to add the DREAM Act now could help soothe that anger.

Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell called Reid's decision "needlessly controversial."
The Senate will need 60 votes to take up the bill next week, and Reid said Tuesday he doesn't know if he has enough votes.

Filed under: Harry Reid • Immigration • issues
soundoff (300 Responses)
  1. boB

    So if it's so important and bipartisan Harry, why not submit it on it's own? I'm so sick of politicians trying to tie something they know won't pass to something else just so they can say "see, they oppose the military!" There should be an oversight board that looks at add-ins like this and disallows them! The only thing that should be in a defense bill is something defense-related. All the more reason why harry should be GONE in November!

    September 14, 2010 06:46 pm at 6:46 pm |
  2. STEVE

    Well if Harry thinks it is a great bill then let it stand on it's on merits. The idea that the immigration bill has to be tied to the defense bill not only puts our troops without funding, it clearly demonstrates a lack of faith in the Democratic platform. Harry, there is a chair at a gas station in the middle of nowhere Nevada with your name on it you will be there in 2011.

    September 14, 2010 06:48 pm at 6:48 pm |
  3. bsmash

    Just typical.

    I hope Nevada puts an end to this guy.

    September 14, 2010 06:48 pm at 6:48 pm |
  4. Harry Weldon

    With this cowardly act Reid has killed the defense bill! Republicans need to unite and VOTE NO unless the amendments are removed.

    September 14, 2010 06:49 pm at 6:49 pm |
  5. yarrrr

    The DREAM Act turns children who weren't Anchor babies into Anchor babies.

    September 14, 2010 06:49 pm at 6:49 pm |
  6. gb8898

    We desperately need an amendment which makes it illegal to stick unrelated measures into a bill. Congress does this all the time in order to hide things from us or make the other party look like obstructionists for not supporting a bill loaded up with unrelated junk. There is absolutely no reason why we shouldn't keep every bill limited to what's in the title.

    September 14, 2010 06:49 pm at 6:49 pm |
  7. catherine Holmes

    As a republican I would love to see the Dream Act passed..parents drag their babies across the boarder into illegal status..and make it so the poor child HAS NO COUNTRY..they dont even remember their home country and they are illegal here..ALL THAT BEING SAID..the parents can not be given legal status as well..if a child is granted a greencard the parents should still be deported..and given the choice of leaving the child here with a legal relative or having the child return with them with the chance of reentry upon their 18th birthday..DO NOT REWARD people who break our laws, like the parents did, but have compassion for those who were dragged acrooss the boarder by their parents.

    September 14, 2010 06:50 pm at 6:50 pm |
  8. gymmbo

    What a tool! Seriously Senator, is that really necessary? If the DREAM ACT is such a winner is should stand on its own instead of being part of a package deal. How many more weeks until these clowns are voted out of office?!?! Not soon enough

    September 14, 2010 06:50 pm at 6:50 pm |
  9. Dave

    I dont think many will mind the military clause, but why help them become citizens just for college? We have enough of our own citizens graduating college that cant find jobs why should we take another countries who are here illegally and help them.

    September 14, 2010 06:51 pm at 6:51 pm |
  10. MDWhite

    This isn't "immigration overhaul."

    It's a blatant attempt to buy votes from people who've broken the law and spit in the faces of those who've obeyed the rules and become American citizens legally and honorably..

    Reid and his democrat frat brothers are impotent, political "johns" who couldn't get it up if their lives depended on it. Dishonest and faithless, they skulk in the dark, trying to buy the favors of...well...I think you've got the picture.

    November can't come fast enough.

    September 14, 2010 06:51 pm at 6:51 pm |
  11. kathleen

    Are we talking about ALL immigrants or just those from Mexico? The idea of a a a young terrorist who manages to enter the country without taking the proper legal steps and THEN gets to serve in the military to gain citizenship is just plain scary. I really think that we need to separate the immigration issues concerning Mexico from the issues we have with other countries.

    September 14, 2010 06:51 pm at 6:51 pm |
  12. Sandra

    I have a Dream, that Harry Reid and every single incumbent in this next election will be looking for a new job.. And things like this is the reason for that Dream.

    September 14, 2010 06:51 pm at 6:51 pm |
  13. SirGareth

    Here is news for ALL Americans:

    as a condition of spending money to protect AMERICAN lives this treasonous senator wants you to pay for college education as a reward for people who are invading our country, He hopes that by giving these illegal invaders the gift of your money they will commit voter fraud and keep his party in office to keep your cash flowing into their pockets

    We used to put people like Harry Reid up in front of a firing squad for giving aid an comfort to the enemy in a time of war. Now they call themselves the leader of the democRAT party.

    We will defeat the enemies of freedom; the democRATS; When we toss them out of office we will try them for treason.

    September 14, 2010 06:52 pm at 6:52 pm |
  14. key

    Who would have known you can serve this county in uniform and not be a legal alien of the US. I knew you didn't have to be a citizens but no papers come on America.

    September 14, 2010 06:53 pm at 6:53 pm |
  15. Alex

    It only makes sense to provide them with amnesty why throw away thousands of dollars of tax money spent educating the children of immigrants up to 12th grade by deporting them or not letting them go to college to become tax paying citizens.

    September 14, 2010 06:53 pm at 6:53 pm |
  16. Aubrey

    Reid (right behind Barry) really is the head of the Socialist Party of Deceit.

    Elections of 2010 & 12 Cannot Come Soon Enough !!

    September 14, 2010 06:53 pm at 6:53 pm |
  17. khpdave

    Reid's social policies have the feel of scorched earth policies more and more. I dread the "dead duck" session following the Nov elections.

    September 14, 2010 06:53 pm at 6:53 pm |
  18. Scott

    Well, this pretty confirms that Reid is Russian spy sent to DC to completely trash our Constitutional form of government. Either that or he's a robotic life form, lacking artificial intelligence, who's sole programmed output is screw-up whatever he touches.

    September 14, 2010 06:53 pm at 6:53 pm |
  19. allmhuran

    Hopefully this does not sit well in Nevada. I can't imagine that it would. Harry Reid putting the final nails in his own coffin? We can only hope.

    September 14, 2010 06:54 pm at 6:54 pm |
  20. STEVE T

    Harry Reid is a FOOL.

    September 14, 2010 06:54 pm at 6:54 pm |
  21. Waistgunnar

    Dirty Harry is out of control. He KNOWS the majority of Americans are opposed to amnesty, yet he ignores them.

    September 14, 2010 06:55 pm at 6:55 pm |
  22. DR

    Is this guy an idiot? Why do you people in Nevada keep voting this idiot in. He is a embarrassment to Americans. he is doing anything he can to try and garner votes to keep these pond scum in office. Harry, come Nov. you will be looking for a new job. Help save America. VOTE HARRY OUT

    September 14, 2010 06:55 pm at 6:55 pm |
  23. enerill

    Vote this group of idiots out in November!

    September 14, 2010 06:56 pm at 6:56 pm |
  24. sandyinohio

    Good God, if Nevadans re-elect this duplicitous jerk after all his shenanigans, they are dolts! The rest of the nation needs them to buck up and boot Reid OUT!

    September 14, 2010 06:57 pm at 6:57 pm |

    Are you telling me, that our government knows, that illegals are serving in OUR military?


    September 14, 2010 06:58 pm at 6:58 pm |
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