Immigration: Neighbors and New Americans

As Attorney General, I will be committed to defending the rights of immigrants, including refugees and asylum seekers.  Nearly everyone in this country has an ancestor that is an immigrant, including me.  My grandfather came to America on a boat, looking for a better life, and my father is a first-generation American.  I will ensure that in Illinois, immigrants are granted all available Constitutional protections, and I will protect the human rights of the men, women, and children who seek a new home in the United States and safe harbor from the world’s most dangerous places.  Our society is only as strong as its members, and our country has a rich history that has always benefited from immigrant populations.

When the federal government enacts policies that promote racial or religious discrimination, tear apart families, and send children to countries that they have never known, I will do everything I can to fight against those policies.  I will vigorously oppose any and all efforts to use religious or racial discrimination to institute so-called “travel bans,” and I will make sure that the State of Illinois is at the forefront of these efforts, building and joining coalitions of Attorneys General from across the country to resist illegal or unconstitutional actions by the Trump administration.

Further, I will work to preserve the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program for those young people who call Illinois home, enroll in our universities, and who hope to graduate and work for their piece of the American Dream.  As I first explained in this opinion piece last September, I believe that it is unconstitutional to induce these young people to provide identifying information to the government under the guise of providing protections, only to then use that very information to forcibly deport them later.  As Attorney General, I would forcefully combat these illegal efforts.  Preserving DACA helps to keep families together, contributes to our society and economy, and keeps children in the only country that they’ve ever called home.  I will not stand for anything that sends our friends and neighbors into the shadows.