DREAM Act headed for Christie’s desk

November 26, 2013

New Jersey Governor Chris Christie exits a polling station after casting his vote during the New Jersey governor election in Mendham Township, New Jersey, November 5, 2013. (Photo: REUTERS/Eduardo Munoz)

The Democratic-controlled New Jersey state legislature will send Gov. Chris Christie (R) a bill granting in-state tuition to illegal immigrants who graduate from state high schools, putting the likely White House contender on the spot. Aaron Blake explains:

Christie has said he supports the general concept of the bill but would not sign it without specific changes — changes the legislature declined to give him.

“They’re overreaching and making it un-signable and making the benefits richer than the federal program, the federal Dream Act,” Christie said Monday on his radio show, before the state legislature declined to make the changes. “That’s simply not acceptable for me.”

Christie has notably declined to weigh in on federal immigration issues — more specifically, a pathway to citizenship for illegal immigrants — saying it is up to federal politicians to deal with it.

Christie won about half of the Latino vote in his 2013 reelection campaign, far better than most GOP candidates. Mitt Romney took 27 percent of the Hispanic vote in the 2012 presidential race.

Reid Wilson covers state politics and policy for the Washington Post's GovBeat blog. He's a former editor in chief of The Hotline, the premier tip sheet on campaigns and elections, and he's a complete political junkie.
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