Jose Antonio Vargas Just Misses Immigration Policy Cutoff, Is Thrilled Anyway

SAN FRANCISCO, CA - JULY 11:  Former Washington Post and San Francisco Chronicle reporter Jose Antonio Vargas speaks at the Commonwealth Club of California on July 11, 2011 in San Francisco, California.  Vargas, an illegal immigrant who recently came out in an article in the New York Times Magazine, spoke in conversation with Hearst Newspapers Editor at Large Phil Bronstein about his life as an illegal immigrant and how he was able to work for major U.S. newspapers.  (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
Photo: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

Pulitzer Prize–winning journalist Jose Antonio Vargas, who has written not one, but two huge magazine stories about his life as an undocumented immigrant, will not be affected personally by Barack Obama's decision to stop deporting young people, but he's elated nonetheless. "This is a HUGE day, a GREAT victory," he told Daily Intel via e-mail. "And though the decision does not apply to me — I'm past age 30; I'm 31 — this a bold and necessary step in the right direction." Vargas, who also runs a group called Define American, is almost exactly the type of person the new policy is meant to protect: He arrived from the Philippines at age 12, has lived and worked in the U.S. since, and has never been charged with a crime. So close. But because of the millions of others that will be affected by the decision, he's still counting this one as a win.