FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 22, 2017
UTAH LEGISLATORS ISSUE OPEN LETTER TO UTAH’S CONGRESSIONAL DELEGATION ON PRESIDENT TRUMP’S DECISION TO END DACA
SALT LAKE CITY – Today, Utah Democratic Legislators released the following open letter to Utah’s Congressional Delegation calling for immediate action to protect Americans in the DACA program:
An Open Letter to Utah’s Congressional Delegation
Senator Orrin Hatch
Senator Mike Lee
Representative Rob Bishop
Representative Mia Love
Representative Chris Stewart
Representative John Curtis
This weekend, you and millions of other families will gather to celebrate the Christmas holiday. This is a time for families to reflect on life’s joys and opportunities and to enjoy the comfort of those whom we love and cherish the most.
Unfortunately, the families of hundreds of thousands of Americans who are enrolled in the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program (DACA) will spend this Christmas living in fear as time runs out for this program. Nearly four months ago, President Trump took the irresponsible and cruel action to end the DACA program. In doing so, he left the lives of these young people in the hands of you and your fellow members of Congress. Unfortunately, with a little over two months remaining before recipients begin losing their protected status, Congress has taken no action to address this coming catastrophe.
Once again, we call upon you, as elected federal representatives of this state, to take immediate action to protect DACA enrollees. These young men and women -- known as Dreamers -- were brought to this country as children. Many of them know no other home but this country. They grew up here, they’ve gone to school here, many have served our nation in the military, and they deserve a chance to build lives in this great nation; to do what so many immigrants have done throughout our history: to make America even greater.
On September 1 of this year, Senator Hatch, the senior member of your delegation said that “We…need a workable, permanent solution for individuals who entered our country unlawfully as children through no fault of their own and who have built their lives here.” On December 20, of this year, he called President Trump “one heck of a leader,” and said that “…we are going to make this the greatest presidency we have seen, not only in generations but maybe ever.” The President responded in kind by calling you a “special friend of mine.” Given the remarkably warm and devoted relationship you have built with the President, we implore you, Senator Hatch, to take this opportunity to use that influence to protect those individuals you spoke so highly of just a few months ago.
Ending DACA will send back into the shadows close to one million exemplary individuals who trusted the government, played by the rules, pay their taxes and contribute to our society. The President’s cruel and irresponsible actions have ensured that this will be a frightening and insecure Christmas in the homes of Dreamers who are Americans in every way but a piece of paper.
Yet again, we add our voices to those of business leaders and elected officials from across the nation and across party lines to call upon you to show the leadership to pass either the bipartisan DREAM Act, the BRIDGE Act, or similar legislation that provides these young people raised in this country the permanent protection and stability that they deserve. We strongly implore you to sign on as co-sponsors and assure that this legislation passes with all due haste.
Senator Gene Davis
Senate Minority Leader
Senator Jim Dabakis
Senator Luz Escamilla
Senator Jani Iwamoto
Senator Karen Mayne
Representative Brian S. King
House Minority Leader
Representative Patrice M. Arent
Representative Joel K. Briscoe
Representative Rebecca Chavez-Houck
Representative Karen Kwan
Representative Lynn Hemmingway
Representative Sandra Hollins
Representative Carol Spackman Moss
Representative Marie H. Poulson
Representative Angela Romero
Representative Elizabeth Weight
Representative Mark A. Wheatley