Supporters of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program; border wall with Mexico Credit: DACA protesters by Diego G. Diaz


Voting 228 for and 197 against, the House on March 18, 2021, passed a Democratic-sponsored bill (HR 6) that would grant permanent legal status and a path to citizenship to as many as 2.1 million Dreamers who were brought illegally to the United States as children and face potential deportation. The bill would grant relief to Dreamers who were younger than 18 when they entered the United States and meet other qualifications. In addition, the bill would provide the same deportation protection and citizenship path to hundreds of thousands of aliens now the United States under a humanitarian program known as Temporary Protected Status.

Floor Debate, Pro & Con

Zoe Lofgren, D-Calif., said the bill allows dreamers “to get right with the law…and go on and become the full Americans that they are except for their paperwork.”

Minority Whip Steve Scalise, R-La., said: “Let’s get back to legal immigration, a system that actually works for America. But when you have a crisis at the border, the last thing you should do is make it worse. That is what this bill does.

A yes vote was to send the bill to the Senate, where no vote has occurred.


Voting 203 for and 216 against, the House on March 18, 2021, defeated a Republican motion that sought to prevent undocumented immigrants who are members of criminal gangs from using a law designed to benefit Dreamers (HR 6, above) as a subterfuge for acquiring legal status through the backdoor.

Floor Debate, Pro & Con

Supporter Jody Hice, R-Ga., said the underlying bill would give preference to “illegals in this country over those who have waited years to become citizens….The Democratic Party knows this is going to create a greater crisis and they simply don’t care. It is time to stop fueling the crisis and start solving it.”

Democratic opponents of the GOP motion said the bill already had safeguards to prohibit undocumented aliens who are a threat to national security, including gang members, from obtaining green cards and path to citizenship.

A yes vote was to adopt the GOP motion.