DREAMers to President Obama: “Deferred Action delivers the Latino Vote – President Obama must deliver more”
Op Ed by United We Dream Network
Washington, DC, Nov. 8, 2012: Last night, Latino voters came out to vote in record numbers clearly knowing what was at stake. Immigrant youth, the DREAMers, waged a fearless campaign to force the DREAM Act onto the political agenda and to convince the President to offer them protection from deportation – a move that 58 percent of Latino voters said made them more enthusiastic about voting for President Barack Obama, who won the Latino vote by a record breaking 75% / 23% margin among Latinos according to a new poll by Latino Decisions, after seeing lukewarm enthusiasm earlier this year.
Mitt Romney’s vow to veto the DREAM Act early in his Republican primaries defined him and the Republican Party in the eyes of Latino voters and his implied vow to end the DREAMer Deferred Action program sealed the deal. With the program at risk, Latinos casted their ballots in favor of candidates who support pro-immigrant legislation.
“The Latino community delivered for President Obama and the Democrats after the President delivered for DREAMers. The United We Dream Network will not let him forget that as we advocate for additional reforms to benefit our families—voting exit polls on Nov. 6th illustrated that Obama received at least 71 percent of the Latino vote.
We will also remind Republicans that they stood against DREAMers and our families and lost big. DREAMers convinced the President to protect us from deportation and we won’t rest until we win permanent policy changes in US Congress that would create a roadmap to citizenship for our families and communities,” said Evelyn Rivera, member of the National Coordinating Committee of United We Dream Network.
The unprecedented impact of DREAMers and the Latino vote this year was apparent in states like Colorado, Nevada, Ohio, and Florida, where their support made the crucial difference in President Obama’s re-election.
“United We Dream will not allow the retrogression of policies, which DREAMers won, that help our communities. Now more than ever, we are unified and know we have the backing of the nation’s fastest growing population of voters: Latinos. We are determined to protect ‘Deferred Action’ and to continue engaging our communities. And it is clear that Latino voters will increasingly play a critical role in upcoming elections,” said Cristina Jiménez, Managing Director of United We Dream Network.
United We Dream local affiliates and leaders took a direct role in getting out the vote, working as part of a collective educational effort throughout the country to reach out to their networks, Latino Voters, and the broader immigrant community, to inform them of their civic engagement duties.
Already looking ahead to 2013, 600 DREAMers who put their issue at the center of politics this year will gather to develop their plan to win additional victories for their families and entire communities at the 4th Annual United We Dream National Congress in Kansas City, MO on November 30th through December 2nd.