Surprise: Harry Reid to add DREAM Act amendment to defense appropriations bill

I don’t get it. Why would a guy locked in a brutal election battle, who famously promised the Latino voters he desperately needs to win that he’d pass comprehensive immigration reform, suddenly add an immigration provision to a defense — ohhhhhh.

This work period, the Senate will consider the Defense Authorization bill. Along with critical support for our national security forces around the world, this legislation will address two other important issues that are long overdue.

Passage of this bill would overturn the ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ rule for our armed forces. We will finally send a loud and clear message that everyone who steps up to serve our country should and will be welcomed regardless of sexual orientation.

We are also offering an amendment to pass the DREAM Act. This amendment will ensure that millions of children who grow up as Americans will be able to get the education they need to contribute to our economy. Students who come to America before age 16 and who have been here for five years should be able get their green card after they go to college or serve in the military. And many who have volunteered to defend our country can finally become citizens of it.

Normally I’d call this self-serving nuttiness since it helps Reid but forces vulnerable Dems to choke on another difficult immigration vote, but the DREAM Act is the most politically palatable ground-preparer for amnesty that the left has. It’s specifically geared at kids and education, so indies won’t grumble too much. In fact, at her debate with Boxer a few weeks ago, Carly Fiorina said she supports it. Frankly, this may be a tougher vote for the GOP in trying to get it stripped out or, possibly, having to vote against the appropriations bill in toto to stop it.

Here’s anti-amnesty Democrat Mickey Kaus making the thumbnail case against the DREAM Act a few years ago. You know what would be great? If the Republicans controlled the Senate so that we didn’t have to face tough votes like this. Oh well.