DACA recipients hopeful for a path to citizenship with President Biden in office
DACA recipients and other immigrants are watching President Joe Biden's first few days in office closely with hopes for a path to citizenship on the horizon.
Local immigration experts say "Dreamers'" pathway to citizenship will take an act of Congress. They say Biden is setting a good tone on his first few days in office.
Alex Meyerovich is an immigration lawyer who says Biden's opening moves on immigration are meant to show a clear break from his predecessor. The president signed an executive order halting deportation for 100 days and another directing his Cabinet to defend the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program.
Camila Bortoletto, a DACA recipient and co-founder of Connecticut Students for a Dream, says what immigrants need won't come from an executive order.
"What we need is a legislative, permanent solution for not just DACA or young folks, but everyone who's undocumented," says Bortoletto.
Biden is also sending Congress an extensive immigration plan that would provide a path to citizenship for 11 million undocumented immigrants. His immigration reform plan would also issue immediate green cards to some DACA recipients and immigrants with Temporary Protected Status.
Meyerovich says getting that plan through an evenly split Senate might take some doing.
"There's gonna be a lot of sweeteners," says Meyerovich. "In terms of budget talks, in terms of appointments - again, horse trading. I think there might be enough congressmen to say, 'OK, we'll situate that particular group of people because we're all gonna come out smelling like flowers.'"
Biden also signed an executive order halting construction of the southern border wall and ending the state of emergency that was declared to help fund it.