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Hillary Clinton Pitches Immigration as an Education Issue

By Alyson Klein — May 06, 2015 1 min read
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Former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said at a Nevada high school that she wants to give students who came to the county as undocumented minors a path to citizenship. And she’d like to help their parents remain in the country legally too, through a major overhaul of the immigration system.

Her remarks—and especially the choice to champion the policy at a high school, surrounded by undocumented students who would benefit from it—makes it clear that the Clinton campaign plans to link the issues of immigration and educational equity.

“We’ve got to do more to make sure every child has the best chance to do well in school,” Clinton said Tuesday at a town hall meeting at Rancho High School in Las Vegas. “It is essential that we strengthen families and communities. That means we have to once and for all fix the immigration system. This is a family issue. It is an economic issue, too. But it’s a family issue at heart.”

And she made a pitch for the education issue that’s closest to her heart: early childhood education. (You can watch the whole event here, or read a transcript.)

Clinton’s broad ideas, which she says she would like to see Congress consider, would build on the efforts of the Obama administration to offer legal status to immigrants who came to the country as children, and lift the threat of deportation for their parents.

Obama accomplished these goals through executive action, not through legislation. That means it’s unclear what will happen to the policies, and the immigrants who have benefitted from them, when his presidency ends in early 2017.

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