Can This Emerging Political Force Reshape New Immigration Laws for Undocumented Immigrants and Their Children?
Policy Issues In his long journey to the White House Barack Obama received an unprecedented support of the Latino population. The election process in 2008 awoke a sleeping giant. According to the nonpartisan National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials between 9.6 million and 11 million Hispanics voted in the election in comparison to the 7.6 that voted in 2004. Latino voters who supported Bush in big numbers in 2004 shifted gears after years of frustration and deception waiting for humane immigrant legislation. The anti-immigrant rhetoric fueled by many Republicans, angry phone calls from constituents that indicated that any legalization supported by Congress was an imminent “amnesty” for unlawful immigrants in this country halted legislation such as the Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors Act. The DREAM Act discussed in October 2007 was 8 votes short (52-44) of overcoming a filibuster by senators opposed to the bill. To gain cloture the law required 6