Politico

Democrats bringing undocumented immigrants to Trump's speech

Written by Lisa

When President Donald Trump makes his first address to a joint session of Congress Tuesday night, at least four undocumented immigrants whose temporary legal status could be revoked will be in the House watching him speak.

Aaima Sayed, a Muslim-American whose parents brought her to the U.S. when she was three years old, has been invited as a guest of the second-highest ranking Senate Democrat, Dick Durbin of Illinois.

Sayed, now a third-year medical student at Loyola University, qualifies for permission to live and work in the U.S. under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program put in place in 2012 by President Barack Obama.

Trump, who has given immigration officials broader license to round up and deporting undocumented immigrants, has not yet moved to roll back DACA, a difficult question he is weighing carefully, White House staffers have repeatedly said.

At least two people registered under DACA have been detained by immigration authorities. One, Daniel Ramirez Medina, is suing the Trump administration over his arrest in federal court, arguing he should not have been detained at all because of DACA status.

Durbin is the sponsor of bipartisan legislation called the BRIDGE Act that seeks to ensure the continuation of the DACA policy.

“Would the United States be better off if Aaima is deported to Pakistan, where she hasn’t lived since she was a toddler, instead of using her talent as a physician to help low-income Americans? The answer is clear,” Durbin said in a statement. “I am honored to host this gifted young medical student as my guest. I hope her presence reminds President Trump what’s at stake in the debate over DACA: the lives of more than 750,000 innocent young people and the wellbeing of entire communities.”

New York Rep. Jerrold Nadler, Colorado Rep. Jared Polis, and Wisconsin Rep. Mark Pocan—all Democrats—also plan to bring DACA recipients to the address.

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