Rep. Don Bacon, metropolitan Omaha's 2nd District congressman, was one of just seven Republicans who joined Democratic House members in approving legislation to provide renewed legal protection for so-called DACA youths to remain in the United States.
The proposal, which won 237-187 House passage, also provided legal protection for temporary protected status recipients as well as the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals youths who were brought to the United States as children by their parents or other adults when they crossed the border illegally.
"While this bill has bad flaws, I voted for it because we cannot continue to leave our DACA youth, as well as TPS and DED (Deferred Enforced Departure) recipients, in no man's land," Bacon said.
"Congress has to take responsibility to force the legislative process," he said.
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"My hope is that the Senate will amend this bill to bolster our border security and fix our broken immigration system," he said.
Bacon said he supports more barriers where requested by the Border Patrol, more immigration agents, a strengthened e-verify system that allows businesses to determine the eligibility of job seekers and employees, and "a revamped system to process asylum seekers in a more efficient manner."
More than 3,000 DACA youths, or so-called Dreamers, are living, working and going to school in Nebraska.
Republican Reps. Jeff Fortenberry and Adrian Smith voted against the bill.