A new regulation that was released last Monday morning by the Trump administration is
geared toward dramatically limiting the amount of legal immigrants allowed to enter or stay in the
United States. By limiting the amount of green card applicants and visa applicants, immigration to
The United States could be reduced to half our current legal immigration numbers.
In continuation to the ongoing threat of ICE raids and most recently the enforcement raids that
occurred last week in Mississippi at food processing plants is just another way this administration is
enforcing strict immigration policy. These unprecedented moves by the administration to limit legal
immigration and eradicate illegal immigration has been a shock to many legal advocates and
The new rule that the administration plans on implementing is similar to merit based immmigration
that candidate Trump had touted throughout his campaign and now as president. Green card and visa applicants could be turned away if they have lower incomes or little education, or have used
government assistance programs, because they’d be more likely to use the same programs.
It will encourage “self-reliance and self-sufficiency for those seeking to come to or stay in the United
States,” said acting US Citizenship and Immigration Services Director Ken Cuccinelli. Lower income
immigrants would be affected the most by this policy as many of the restrictions apply to them. When
asked about targeting low-income immigrants Cuccinelli stated, “We certainly expect people of any
income to be able to stand on their own two feet, so if people are not able to be self-sufficient, than
this negative factor is going to bear very heavily against them in a decision about whether they’ll be ableto become a legal permanent resident.”
Many immigration advocates have stated that the new rule will specifically target those from poorer countries and prompt legal residence to forgo public aid. There are some exceptions to the rule, such as benefits received by active duty member of the military, Medicaid for pregnant women, children under 21 years old, and emergency medical care. Earlier this year, President Donald Trump also issued a memorandum doubling down on a current law that requires immigrants’ sponsors to take financial responsibility for certain income-based government benefits the immigrant receives.
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