Northwesterners Cheer, Jeer Obama's Immigration Announcement

Jun 15, 2012

President Obama's announcement Friday that some young adults who came to this country illegally as children will get a reprieve from deportation has sparked strong reactions here in the Northwest.

Oregon and Washington groups opposed to illegal immigration strongly criticized the President's announcement. They said it was politically motivated. But those in the region who support an overhaul of the nation's immigration laws cheered.

Fredy Zarate is a community college student in Seattle. He says his aunt brought him to the U.S. from Mexico at age nine and he's now studying to be a corporate accountant. He says the President's announcement takes a weight off his shoulders.

"It allows me to come out from a shadow that has been over me for so long, because I never told any of my friends," Zarate says. "And now I'm not scared."

Zarate says he's been able to afford college because Washington allows resident undocumented students to qualify for in-state tuition rates. That's not the case in Oregon despite repeated attempts in the legislature to allow the same.

Copyright 2012 Northwest News Network

On the Web:

New immigration policy FAQs

President Obama's remarks