Monday night’s Republican debate–the seventeenth such event this election–was largely a snooze-fest for young Americans (save for the future astronauts of America!). But there was one question that perked our ears.
Beth Reinhard of the National Journal pressed presidential hopeful Newt Gingrich on his stance on the controversial DREAM Act, which would provide a pathway to citizenship for undocumented youth in America. The former Speaker of the House claimed he would work to cut out the education component o the act, which is not surprising given his attacks on higher education. Gingrich said he believes a “pass-able” version of the bill could could maintain the military component, which would allow such youth legal status if they enroll in the United States armed forces.
Watch the clip:
Reinhard: Speaker Gingrich, I want to move on to a slightly different topic—the DREAM Act, which, as you know, would provide a pathway to citizenship for children who came to the U.S. illegally if they attend college or enroll in the military. Now, Gov. Romney and Sen. Santorum have both said they’d veto this legislation. Would you do the same?
Gingrich: No, I would work to get a sign-able version, which would be the military component. I think any young person living in the United States, who happened to be brought here by their parents when they were very young, should have the same opportunity to join the American military and earn citizenship, which they would have had from back home. We have a clear provision that if you live in a foreign country and you are prepared to join the American military you can in fact earn the right to citizenship by serving the United States and taking real risk on behalf of the United States. That part of the DREAM Act I would support. I would not support the part that simply says everyone who goes to college is automatically waived from having broken the law.
Romney: I just note that that is the same position I have. I would not sign the DREAM Act as it currently exists, but I would sign the DREAM Act if it was focused on military service.
Williams: Thank you, Governor.