Rep. Rohrabacher Complains The DREAM Act Is Unfair To 'Non-Minorities'

December 09, 2010 9:38 am ET — Matt Finkelstein

Last night, the House approved the DREAM Act by a vote of 216-198, with eight Republicans supporting the bill. Conservatives have invented a variety of excuses for opposing the legislation, which would provide a path to citizenship for illegal immigrants who were brought to the U.S. as children if they join the military or go to college. But during the debate on the House floor, Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA) made the reason for his opposition plain: the DREAM Act, which he called the "Affirmative Action Amnesty Act," would be unfair to "non-minority" Americans:

REP. ROHRABACHER: I rise in opposition to the Affirmative Action Amnesty Act, or otherwise known as the DREAM Act, which we are now debating. Uh, Mr. Speaker, uh, if an illegal immigrant, if this act passes, if an illegal immigrant happens to be of a racial or ethnic minority, which the vast majority of illegal immigrants are, that individual, as soon as legal status is granted, will be entitled to all the education, employment, job training, government contract, and other minority preferences that are written into our federal and state laws. As a result, the DREAM Act would not only put illegal immigrants on par with American citizens, but would in many cases put them ahead of most American citizens and legal immigrants. So those voting for this so-called DREAM Act are voting to relegate the position of non-minority American citizens to behind those who are now in this country illegally.

If anyone thought Rohrabacher's "non-minority" remark was a slip of the tongue, he quickly removed any doubt. "This legislation not only increases the burden on our hard-pressed government programs and services, but will give foreigners who are here illegally preference over non-minority citizens, U.S. Citizens," he repeated. "It doesn't get much worse than that." Watch: