President Obama Policy To Spare Many Youths From Deportation

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

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UPDATE: Friday, June 15, 2012

President Barack Obama is easing enforcement of immigration laws, effective immediately. The new policy offers a chance for hundreds of thousands of younger illegal immigrants to stay in the U.S. and work.

The change was immediately embraced by Hispanics, but criticized by congressional Republicans.

The policy change will affect as many as 800,000 immigrants who have lived in fear of deportation. It bypasses Congress and partially achieves the goals of the "DREAM Act."

Under the administration plan, illegal immigrants will be immune from deportation if they were brought to the United States before they turned 16 and are younger than 30, have been in the country for at least five continuous years, have no criminal history, graduated from a U.S. high school or earned a GED or served in the military.

The president made his announcement in the White House Rose Garden. Midway through his remarks, Obama was interrupted by a reporter from a conservative online publication. Neil Munro of the Daily Caller shouted, "Why do you favor foreigners over American workers?" Clearly irritated, Obama said that he was explaining the policy, not looking for an argument, and that the change was the "right thing to do for the American people."

UPDATE: Friday, June 15, 2012

President Barack Obama says his plan to stop deporting younger illegal immigrants who came to the U.S. as children will make the system "more fair, more efficient and more just."

The president says it "makes no sense to expel talented young people" who are essentially Americans. He says he was taking the action in the absence of action by Congress "to fix our broken system."

Obama's election-year initiative should help him among Hispanic voters. It will begin granting young immigrants work permits, affecting as many as 800,000 young people who have lived in fear of deportation.

A man in the Rose Garden asked Obama while he was speaking, "Why do you favor foreigners over American workers?" Obama responded that "this is the right thing to do."

Friday, June 15, 2012

The Obama administration will stop deporting and begin giving work permits to younger illegal immigrants who came to the U.S. as children and have since led law-abiding lives. The election-year initiative addresses a top priority of a growing Latino electorate that has opposed administration deportation policies.

The administration's decision will affect as many as 800,000 immigrants. Two senior administration officials described the plan on condition of anonymity ahead of its expected announcement Friday.

Illegal immigrants will avoid deportation and be eligible for work permits if they arrived in the U.S. before age 16, are younger than 30, have been in the country for at least five continuous years, have no criminal history, graduated from a U.S. high school or earned a GED, or served in the military.


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