Differing DREAMs: Estimating the Unauthorized Populations that Could Benefit under Different Legalization Bills
2017 saw the introduction of several bills—two of them by Senate Republicans in the weeks following the Trump administration’s announcement that it would terminate the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program—that would provide a pathway to conditional and then legal permanent residence to unauthorized immigrants brought to the United States as children, if they meet a range of educational, professional, and other criteria.
This fact sheet offers estimates of the populations that could potentially benefit under five legislative proposals: the Recognizing America’s Children Act (RAC Act), the DREAM Act of 2017, the American Hope Act, the SUCCEED Act, and the Border Security and Deferred Action Recipient Relief Act.
Drawing upon a unique MPI methodology that permits analysis and modeling of characteristics of the unauthorized population in U.S. Census Bureau data, the fact sheet provides estimates for each of the bills of:
(1) the population meeting the minimum age at arrival and years of U.S. residence criteria to be included in the pool eligible to apply;
2) the subset that could gain conditional permanent resident status after achieving educational and other requirements;
(3) the number of conditional status recipients who would be expected to progress to legal permanent residence (in other words get a green card) by fulfilling each bill’s specific postsecondary education, military service, or employment requirements.
The fact sheet also examines the key qualifying criteria under each of the bills at the different intervals.