Sixth District congressional candidate Sean Casten (D-Downers Grove) today called out Rep. Peter Roskam (R-Wheaton) for his continuing refusal to allow a vote on the status of the Dreamers -- the thousands of young people brought to America as minors who are at risk of deportation.
"As the deadline approaches for signing the discharge petition calling for a vote on the Dreamers' future, Peter Roskam continues to duck and cover," said Casten. "Dodging responsibility and cowering when faced with a moral question is not what the people of the sixth district expect from their representative."
"Just days ago, Roskam signed a letter urging President Trump to keep Rod Blagojevich in jail," Casten said. "But he can't find the time -- or the guts -- to sign the petition that would keep tens of thousands of young people in this country. For most of them, America is the only country they've ever known."
"There's no way to describe this except as a moral failure on the part of the person who's supposed to represent our district's views and values," Casten said.
President Trump has ordered an end to the legal protection for Dreamers instituted under President Obama. So far, Speaker Paul Ryan and Republican leaders have refused to allow a vote on the matter.
Casten supports the DREAM Act, introduced by Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL), which would protect the status of the Dreamers and provide them with an opportunity to obtain U.S. citizenship. More than 400,000 Dreamers have been awarded DACA status to keep working toward a better life.
More than 42,000 of those recipients reside in Illinois. Many of them are students and workers, with some serving in the U.S. military. "These young people are Americans in every sense," Casten said. "They deserve the chance to build their futures here -- their home."