September 21st, 2010
11:44 AM ET

Student's 'DREAM,' last hope rests on Senate vote

Yahaira Carrillo and other students take part in news conference promoting the Dream Act.

When Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said he would be introducing the DREAM Act and a “don’t ask, don’t tell” repeal as amendments to the defense authorization bill it sent shockwaves through political and immigration circles. Before those two additions can be voted on, the Senate must agree to close debate on the larger defense bill - something that may not happen.

GOP senators, in addition to frustrations with the possible “don’t ask, don’t tell” repeal, also dislike Reid's plan to add the DREAM act, an immigration-related provision to the defense bill.

The DREAM Act would create a path to citizenship for illegal immigrants who entered the United States as children. Under the bill, an individual would have to be of “good moral character” and either receive a college degree or complete at least two years of U.S. military service. Yahaira Carrillo is a college student who, while in high school, participated in Jr. ROTC, while dreaming of becoming a United States Marine.

“I wanted to be in uniform,” she told CNN, but she quit ROTC when a Captain-classmate warned that her undocumented status would bar her from joining the Marines.

The 25-year-old college senior is currently in deportation proceedings, but if the Dream Act became law she could earn U.S. citizenship.

“This is where I want to be.” Carrillo told CNN’s Dick Uliano. “I want to be here. I don’t want to be anywhere else.”

Listen to Carillo's story here:

Or you can also listen to the CNN Radio Reports' podcast on iTunes or subscribe to the podcast here.

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Filed under: Harry Reid • Immigration • Politics
soundoff (456 Responses)
  1. RogerThat

    I say take all the blame on the 9/11 attacks, and on the ex president GeorgA Bush. Illegals mine their own business trying to make money so they could live in this great country. NOT to attack on their own people. I say it started from that era!

    September 21, 2010 at 2:25 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Bill, Bloomington Il

    So if your in the middle class or above you will have a path to citizenship. Being poor mean that President Obama does not want you here. Shame on the party of hate. Far worse than the party of no.

    September 21, 2010 at 2:26 pm | Report abuse |
  3. angie

    Some of u stop being so selfish and arrogant! what is that u have to loose?, at some point every person's parents or grandparents came here illegally (except the indians) have u ask yourself or your grandparents how they came to America legally or illegally.

    September 21, 2010 at 2:28 pm | Report abuse |
  4. David

    This is just granting amnesty to law breakers.

    September 21, 2010 at 2:30 pm | Report abuse |
    • Benjamin

      Ohhhhhh so earning something through timeand hard work is Amnesty?? I knew my paycheck had a label...Thx Dave

      September 21, 2010 at 2:34 pm | Report abuse |
  5. David

    The democrats are just trying to get re-elected. Grant amnesty...then the lawbreakers become citizens (democrats).

    September 21, 2010 at 2:31 pm | Report abuse |
  6. DREAMer


    September 21, 2010 at 2:32 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Francisco

    Pass the Dream Act!

    FOR ALL YOU CLOSED MINDED PEOPLE, IMMIGRANTS MAKE THIS COUNTRY!! OUR FOUNDING FATHERS BELIEVED IN EQUAL FOR ALL! I'm sick of people being so closed minded and think that they're the only ones in this planet. I'm a US resident and will become a US citizen in 3 years. There is no other place I rather be than here in the US. We as immigrants run away from our own country for a better life. Yes, there are those criminals that come and of course this Dream Act wouldn't apply for them. There are certain rules within to apply for the Dream act and one of them is be a person of good moral. Young adults that want to go and expand their studies cannot accomplish their goals because of their illegal status. I have a 12 year old sister that has been in the US for 11 years. She doesn't know any other place than her own US country! even though she is Mexican, she doesn't know her culture and all she knows if how to be an American. But wait, she isn't because of some stupid law says so.
    I'm with you all Latinos today praying for this Dream Act to be passed.\
    God Bless America.

    September 21, 2010 at 2:32 pm | Report abuse |
    • idb

      Francisco, immigrants made this country, you are completely right about that. However, immigrants came here legally. This discussion is about illegal aliens who just want to abuse the goodness of the people of the country they leech on.

      September 21, 2010 at 2:45 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Mike

    Do the right thing is always the cry of those with nothing to lose and everything to gain. Schools are already over flowing and american families pay the price. Read the bills hidden agenda. VOTE NO

    September 21, 2010 at 2:36 pm | Report abuse |
  9. JC

    I have lived in LA all my life and I am now in my 40s. Illegal immigrants come to the U.S. because employers are willing to break the law and hire them. Since Reagan signed the 1980s amnesty I've watched how Los Angeles changed demographically into the highest concentration of hispanic immigrants of anywhere in the nation. (confirmed by a recent study by the OC register). There are parts of LA county that one could not easily tell is the U.S. Socio-economically many western U.S. cities are about to loose the American way while many already have. Do the liberals think about how the western U.S. recoquista is almost complete? Do they even regard the living conditions of L.A. while they sit in their Volvos and sip long Island IceTeas in Martha's Vineyard? Amnesty in ANY form serves as even further an incentive for millions more to come here. Where does one draw the line?

    What's wrong with them improving their countries? I am sure if there wasen't a U.S. for them to flee to they would be forced to take up issues with their governments and make for better conditions from where they come.

    I feel for the anchor-babies but the Dream Act would be highly detrimental. It would serve as even more incentive for millions more illegal immigrants to vacate their country of origin and migrate to the U.S. They would leave their country of origin as dusty ghost towns. Many Latin American towns are already left practically abandoned by the flight of people leaving their country. Had Reagan seen the wave of millions of illegal immigrants flocking to the U.S. I think he would not have signed it.

    Again, I feel for the kids, but RULE OF LAW needs to prevail!!! Otherwise Law and Order in the U.S. is corrupt and favoritist.

    September 21, 2010 at 2:36 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Dream On.....Dream act

    There is a line and it starts over right over -----–>>>>>>> there .

    September 21, 2010 at 2:36 pm | Report abuse |
  11. David

    Call your congressman.....just say no to amnesty.

    September 21, 2010 at 2:38 pm | Report abuse |
  12. David

    Illegals...what part of illegal do you not understand?

    September 21, 2010 at 2:39 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Marissa

    FYI to all the ignorant, not all illegal immigrants are Mexican. This is the very reason that many are named "racist" and then they wonder why they call them this. Yes, millions do cross the Mexican boarder, but one must remember that there are other countries underneath Mexico. Just because you see a brown person does not automatically make them "Mexican". If you wish to not be called a racist then keep race out of the discussion unless you name all the countries that immigrants comes from and do not single out Mexico.


    September 21, 2010 at 2:41 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Francisco

    oh Mr. David, I'm pretty sure your ancestors are IMMIGRANTS!!!!! AND THAT IS HOW THIS COUNTRY IS MADE OF!

    September 21, 2010 at 2:43 pm | Report abuse |
  15. David

    My Dream....all illegals are rounded up and sent home.
    And yes, not all illegals are Mexican...many are from other south american countries, china, africa, etc, etc

    September 21, 2010 at 2:44 pm | Report abuse |
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