Today, New York State’s Democrats passed the Free College for Illegals Act, which makes undocumented individuals eligible for the state’s Tuition Assistance Program. I was proud to vote against this legislation.
At a time when hard-working, law-abiding, middle-class New Yorkers struggle to make ends meet, Senate Democrats are pandering to their radical New York City base and voted to give illegal aliens taxpayer-funded college tuition. No longer in New York State are you rewarded for working hard and following the rules. Senate Dems are creating a culture in our state where law and order takes a back seat to political theater and re-election. As long as there is a single resident of our state struggling to put their child through higher education, I will not support free college for those who do not pay into the system.
Make no mistake — this is only the beginning of what will be a concentrated effort to harbor and fully protect illegal aliens. As expected, there is already an increased push by radical leftist senators and interest groups out of New York City to give illegals more power. Sitting senators and groups like the New York Immigration Coalition are calling for driver’s licenses for undocumented residents and more funding for legal protections of these illegals.
The Free College for Illegals Act is only a start to what will be a complete and utter rejection of any form of enforcement of immigration law. State Senator Julia Salazar has made a priority of hers to see these illegal aliens “have the right to a driver’s license, to be protected from being profiled in State institutions, voting rights, and for the right to apply to professional licenses.” She is not alone in her conviction as many newly elected Democrats also feel illegal aliens should be treated the same as the law-abiding taxpayers of this state.
Regardless of what Democrats decide to do, I will continue to speak out for the hard-working, law-abiding taxpayers of our state and be a voice of those who are forced to foot the bill for these radical Democrat policies.
Robert G. Ortt
62nd Senate District