All You Need to Know About Trump’s New Immigration Plan Proposal Favoring Skills over Family TiesMay 17, 2019 12:13
(Image source from: CBC.ca)
President Donald Trump on Thursday announced his plan to prioritize high-skilled immigrants and curtail family-based migration.
However, the proposal is still light on details and faces earnest challenges in Congress.
"Our proposal is pro-American, pro-immigrant, and pro-worker. It's just common sense," the president told supporters and reporters on Thursday.
According to the White House, the proposal would tighten family-based migration to focus on allowing nuclear families who migrate to the United States instead of extended family members.
Here are some of the highlights of the proposal:
1. The plan would cut most categories of family-based immigration into the United States.
2. Green cards would be allocated through a points system that would favor immigrants with high levels of education, professional skill, and English-language fluency.
3. There would be some form of test of “patriotic assimilation” - to quote the Washington Post, “One administration official offered an example in which green-card applicants would be required to pass an exam based on a reading of George Washington’s farewell address or Thomas Jefferson’s letter to the Danbury Baptist Association.” (However, it is still not clear whether the test would be a way to score points under the point system or whether green-card applicants would have to pass it to qualify in addition to accumulating adequate points.)
4. The overall number of immigrants allowed to come to the US would not be reduced.
5. There would also be some form of border security provisions, including funds to screen every pedestrian and vehicle entering the United States.
Spouses and children will go "right to the front of the line," Trump said Thursday, but extended family members would be much less likely to be allowed to come to the U.S, with them.
According to Trump, this proposal will finally make the system fair, transparent and open to all, suggesting the current system is outdated.
"We discriminate against genius," the president told supporters and reporters in the White House Thursday, adding, "We won't anymore, once we get this passed, and we hope to get it passed as soon as possible."
But the president's proposal won't include any protections for undocumented immigrants who arrived as children. It is not clear if a single Democrat has been consulted on the plan up to now, and quite a lot Republicans have offered tepid responses to the proposal. Some Democrats are calling the proposal dead on arrival.
"Right now this is the Trump plan. We're hoping this will become the Republican plan," said the senior administration official.
The official said the White House thinks it has a good sense of where many Democrats stand but intends to put the proposal out and gauge the reaction. "Let's see" what happens from there, the official said.
The senior administration official who briefed reporters Wednesday said the "president's mandate to us is come up with something" detailed that can unify Republicans.
When asked if it can pass before the 2020 presidential election, the senior administration official said: "Maybe we can, maybe we can't. But we're going to try like hell.”
On Thursday, Trump said that if for some reason Democrats don't go along with his plan, it will pass after Democrats win back the House in 2020.
By Sowmya Sangam