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DACAmented can go to the Military, or can they?
On Thursday September 25, 2014, President Obama announced that immigrants with Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) can now apply to serve in the Military. At its face, this sounds like great. Those that served in the military can apply for expedited immigration process and can apply for their families. For example, parole in place. But let’s look at what the administration really did. Obama is expanding MAVNI (Military Accessions in the National Interest) to include undocumented immigrants who applied and received Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals. MAVNI is limited to 1500 people a year, but they must have a particular skill. For example, speak a foreign language (not Spanish) or have medical expertise. Here is another potential problem. The military places restrictions on anyone, even U.S. citizens, who have undocumented family relative. Many DACA immigrants have at least one parent who is undocumented. Otherwise, the immigrant’s parents would have filed for them. I have not encountered a single DACA candidate who didn’t have at least one undocumented relative. This comes out as part of a mandatory background check. Even if this is ultimately waived, it still requires the applicant to disclose the information which many DACA recipients will not do. There are over 600,000 DACA individuals in the U.S. I have many met many that would love to serve our country if allowed to do so. This announcement is a joke. It gives the appearance of a move in the right direction, without any substance. It doesn’t help the military. It doesn’t help the immigrant community. In fact, it will likely anger the immigrant community. This isn’t likely to generate votes in November. There is no benefit to the Obama Administration or Democrats in general. This makes the Obama administration look sloppy, again.