Democrats’ Vision for Free Community College Would Boost Undocumented Students

The massive economic policy package Democrats are trying to muscle through Congress could open the door to free community college for undocumented immigrants.

But that lifeline for many people now denied access to higher education could also reignite controversies in Republican-leaning states over immigration and federal overreach. 

The provision on immigrants was included in a plan drafted by House Democrats to provide two years of tuition-free community college for students. The proposal calls for the federal government to dole out $111 billion to states from 2023 to 2028. The states would use that money to cover tuition for community college students.

To receive the money, though, states could not deny the tuition-free benefits based on “citizenship, alienage, or immigration status.” 

That would run afoul of current laws in several states. 

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