Politics

Feb 21, 2011 7:27 AM by James Amos and Andy Koen

Pueblo lawmaker fights for in state tuition for children of illegals

A state senator from Pueblo is continuing her fight to allow illegal immigrants to pay in-state tuition at publicly funded colleges and universities. Democrat Angela Giron Says some of the state's top high school students are children whose parents aren't in the country legally.

An estimated 700 high school students are currently living in the state with that status.

"They're kids who have been here since they were 2 or 3 years old. They don't know any other country. They don't know any other state," Giron said. "These young people and their families have been paying taxes; they paid the gas tax, they paid sales tax, so they have put in a lot of taxes."

Her republican counterparts disagree. State Representative Keith Swerdfeger also from Pueblo points out, "the underlying fact is, what are they going to do with that college degree if American business can't put them to work? You have to be a documented employee in this country to go to work."

Giron says the students will have to sign papers saying they will work to become citizens. Eleven states have similar programs.

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