Democratic lawmakers planning dinners with DREAMer immigrants

Darren Soto

Dinners are being planned throughout Florida this month featuring Democratic lawmakers and young, undocumented immigrants to draw attention to the federal Deferred Action of Childhood Arrivals program that is at risk of being ended by the administration of President Donald Trump.

The meals, which include events that occurred in the past week featuring Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum, a gubernatorial candidate, and state Sen. Jose Rodriguez of Miami, continue Friday and early next week, with more being planned.

Up to 800,000 undocumented young immigrants, people who essentially have lived their whole lives in the United States after being brought here as young children, are eligible for the work visas under the program, including an estimated 102,000 in Florida.

Friday U.S. Rep. Darren Soto plans to have a lunch with several young, DACA-eligible immigrants Friday in Kissimmee.

State Reps. Robert Asencio of Miami and Daisy Baez of Coral Gables will join the America’s Voice advocacy group for a dinner in Miami Sunday evening, honoring young immigrants known as “DREAMers” who were made eligible to stay in the United States despite their lack of immigration documents, under the DACA

State Reps. Amy Mercado of Orlando, John Cortes of Kissimmee, Carlos Guillermo Smith of Orlando, and State Sen. Victor Torres will be joining young immigrants and America’s Voice advocates for a similar dinner Monday evening.

The events area part of a nationwide effort America’s Voice has organized.

“As the representative of a district with a rich multi-ethnic population, I want to learn and showcase all of the wonderful accomplishments the DREAMers in my area have been able to obtain because of DACA,” Mercado said in a news release issued by her office.

Scott Powers

Scott Powers is an Orlando-based political journalist with 30+ years’ experience, mostly at newspapers such as the Orlando Sentinel and the Columbus Dispatch. He covers local, state and federal politics and space news across much of Central Florida. His career earned numerous journalism awards for stories ranging from the Space Shuttle Columbia disaster to presidential elections to misplaced nuclear waste. He and his wife Connie have three grown children. Besides them, he’s into mystery and suspense books and movies, rock, blues, basketball, baseball, writing unpublished novels, and being amused. Email him at [email protected].


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