Trump endorses new 'merit-based' immigration system

LONG HISTORY Slashing legal immigration has always been pushed by low-immigration advocacy groups in Washington like NumbersUSA and the ideas have been backed by now-Attorney General Jeff Sessions, who is now facing public criticism from Trump. "It also increases the risk of the recession".

Top White House aides have been working with Perdue and Cotton on the bill that - if passed - would dramatically remake the current immigration system, which allows a number of ways to bring family members to the United States along with job-based visas.

The bill's supporters, meanwhile, say it would make the US more competitive, raise wages and create jobs.

Trump also defended the use of foreign labor at his resort properties, which have continued to request worker visas since his election.

In short, the RAISE Act (which stands for the Reforming American Immigration for Strong Employment Act) would be a major overhaul of America's system for legal immigration, transitioning it to a more-strident screening process that would grant favoritism to English-speakers with the ability to support themselves financially.

Cotton and Perdue's early version of the legislation had proposed a 50% reduction in annual immigration over the next 10 years, allotting green cards for just 539,958 immigrants in 2027 compared to the 1,051,031 that received them in 2015.

The bill also proposed to eliminate certain pathways to family-based immigration, stipulating that only spouses and minor children of United States citizens and permanent residents would be eligible for green cards.

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Robbins, who regularly meets with GOP lawmakers, added: "There is overwhelming support in Congress for the idea of immigration as an economic driver, including in the Republican conference".

The president had promised an Iowa crowd in June that he would soon introduce legislation that legal immigrants to America should not receive welfare benefits for at least five years.

"Cotton says the number of green cards awarded each year - about a million - is excessive". He added that the legislation is meant to favor green-card applicants who can speak English, financially support themselves, and demonstrate their skills, which he said would "reduce poverty, increase wages, and save taxpayers billions and billions". The level is now higher than at most periods in USA history. "The reason we need to do this is very simple: Our current system does not work". Despite the opposition, the bill fits firmly into Trump's campaign promises to curb immigration.

While cracking down on illegal immigration was central to Trump's campaign, his position on legal immigration has been much more ambiguous.

"We are taking action to fix some of the shortcomings in our legal immigration system", Perdue said at the time.

Last week, when speculation about Sessions was rife, Sanders repeatedly declined opportunities to provide assurances that the attorney general enjoyed the president's full confidence.

(Copyright © 2015. All Rights Reserved.)
 
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