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Illegal immigrant makes history, addresses Democratic convention

Published: Sep 6, 2012 7:00 am By: Hector Becerra

"It was a short speech, but when Benita Veliz stepped up to the lectern at the Democratic National Convention, she made history. The 27-year-old from San Antonio became the first illegal immigrant to address a national political convention.

“Like so many Americans of all races and backgrounds, I was brought here as a child,” she told the crowd Wednesday night. “I’ve been here ever since.”

Veliz, an advocate for the Dream Act — legislation that would pave the way for illegal immigrants to legal residency and citizenship if they go to college or perform military service — talked of being a high-achieving student who graduated early from Jefferson High School, becoming a National Merit Scholar, before graduating from St. Mary’s University."

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