The Common Good

Rev. Wallis to Senators: You Are Sacrificing 800,000 Futures on the Cruel Altar of Politics

Source: Sojourners
Date: December 17, 2010

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Friday, December 17, 2010

CONTACT: Evan Trowbridge at etrowbridge@sojo.net / 202-745-4625 or

Tim King at tking@sojo.net / 202-631-7763

Rev. Wallis is available for comment

Rev. Wallis to Senators: You Are Sacrificing 800,000 Futures on the Cruel Altar of Politics

WASHINGTON, DC — With the DREAM Act poised for a vote in less than 24 hours, Rev. Jim Wallis is reprimanding senators who have rescinded their support for this morally vital legislation.

 “To the senators who were for the DREAM Act or even cosponsored it before they were against it,” Wallis said. “You know the right thing to do. If you vote “no” on this bill, you are sacrificing the futures of 800,000 young people on the cruel altar of partisan politics. You should be ashamed of yourselves if you deliver a big lump of coal this Christmas to young people who could become some of our best and brightest citizens.”

The statement is just the latest from Wallis, who continues to lead the call from the religious community backing the DREAM Act.

On Tuesday, Wallis rallied with more than 20 other religious leaders and more than 100 students who have braved the winter cold for more than a week to bring attention to their plight — a plight of families that are torn apart each day and youth who are deported from the only land they have ever known.

“I haven’t seen any issue unite the church like this in years,” Wallis said at Tuesday’s rally, which was dispersed by police who threatened to arrest participants. “I want to say to the Senate and the White House, ‘When you ignore a witness all the way from the Unitarians to the Pentecostals, you’re in trouble.’”

The DREAM (Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors) Act will provide a path to citizenship for immigrant youth through earning a college degree or serving in the military. It is the next step in fixing an immigration system that destroys 1,100 lives every day. Individuals of faith on both the Left and Right agree that this is neither right nor just.

"The dream to go to college or a commitment to public service should not be illegal- even if you are the children of undocumented parents,” Wallis said. “For the Christian community, this is Advent, a season of hope and anticipation. We celebrate a hope fulfilled, but we are praying for a hope that has been deferred for far too long."

Wallis’ remarks should be especially heeded by the following senators who have supported the DREAM Act in the past:

Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah)

Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa)

Sen. Dick Lugar (R-Indiana),

Sen. John McCain (R-Arizona)

Sen. Jon Kyl (R-Arizona)

Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas)

Bob Bennett (R-Utah)

Sam Brownback (R-Kansas)

Susan Collins (R-Maine)

Chuck Hagel (R-Nebraska)

Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-Texas)

Olympia Snowe (R-Maine)

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Jim Wallis is the president and CEO of Sojourners, the largest network of social justice Christians in the United States focused on the biblical call to social justice. Wallis is also author of the New York Times bestsellers God's Politics: Why the Right Gets It Wrong and the Left Doesn't Get It and The Great Awakening: Seven Ways To Change The World,Reviving Faith & Politics. His latest book is Rediscovering Values: On Wall Street, Main Street, and Your Street.

Sojourners' mission is to articulate the biblical call to social justice, inspiring hope and building a movement to transform individuals, communities, the church, and the world. Visit www.sojo.net, and www.GodsPolitics.com.