Sen. Mark Warner chose to use his extra ticket to the State of the Union to invite a young lady who was brought to the United States illegally when she was 12 years old.
Amber Pinto graduated from Fairfax High School and is a student at Northern Virginia Community College, but pays out of state tuition because she is undocumented.
Warner invited Pinto as an example of someone who would benefit from the DREAM act. He also believes Pinto serves as a good example for the need for comprehensive immigration reform.
"This puts a human face on a story that otherwise sometimes gets caught up a lot in facts and figures," Warner told me Tuesday afternoon. "This is about the human stories about the people that help to move this country forward. (Pinto) pays taxes, She speaks English. She is willing to pay any back fines, she just wants her chance to touch the American Dream.
The Virginia General Assembly has been resistant to offering in state tuition to undocumented immigrants, regardless of how long they have been in the country or how they got here. There does however appear to be movement on the Federal level to move forward with some type of immigration reform.