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Democrats urge possible beneficiaries to request immigration relief

Last Updated on Tuesday, 2 December 2014, 22:44 by GxMedia

Washington, Dec 2 (EFE).- Democrats in the House of Representatives on Tuesday urged anyone who might benefit from the recent executive action on immigration to present their applications, saying that the Republicans “have no moral authority” to try and overturn it if they are not offering any alternative.

At a press conference held in the Capitol, along with members of the immigrant community that will benefit from the unilateral measures taken by President Barack Obama to provide immigration relief, several Democratic legislators also expressed their willingness to help potential beneficiaries complete all the documentation and thus avoid deportation.

“If you do not like what the president of the United States has done, then it is your responsibility to offer us an alternative other than to demonize and criminalize our immigrant community,” Illinois lawmaker Luis Gutierrez said.

Among those attending the press conference were immigration activists and the children of undocumented immigrants protected by the DREAM Act.

Obama’s executive action measures will enable some 5 million undocumented foreigners to avoid deportation if they fulfill a series of requirements and present a request that will require extensive documentation and will be able to be submitted starting next spring.

“When that door opens, we should have hundreds of thousands, if not millions, with their documents, ready to submit them,” Gutierrez said, adding that “while Republicans are complaining and bellyaching, we’re going to act.”

The House is scheduled on Tuesday to hold two hearings headed by Republicans to deal with Obama’s measures on immigration, which conservatives feel go far beyond his constitutional authority.

Accompanying Gutierrez at the press conference were Democratic colleagues Judy Chu and Zoe Lofgren of California, John Conyers of Michigan and Sheila Jackson Lee of Texas.