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Trump backs slashing legal immigration with 'merit-based' system

Trump backs slashing legal immigration with 'merit-based' system

U.S. president Donald Trump on Wednesday endorsed a legislation that seeks to promote a merit-based immigration system similar to that in Canada and Australia, but which will also sharply reduce legal immigration, cutting the number of green cards issued every year.

Trump announced his support for the RAISE Act, a bill to reform legal immigration to a merit-based system that benefits US workers. It would alter the immigration screening process to favor English speakers with the purported ability to support themselves financially and demonstrate skills that will benefit the economy, and would also, according to the president, prohibit recently arrived green-card holders from receiving welfare.

The measure prioritizes immediate family members of USA residents, including spouses and minor children, but would end preferences for extended family members and adult children. You're going to be hearing a lot more about this rising star of the uncompromising right. "The RAISE Act will increase wages, decrease poverty and save taxpayers billions of billions of dollars".

Trump declares the bill to be the most significant immigration reform in half a century. VerBruggen calls that a major problem, with good reason: Politically, opposing legal immigration is not a good hill to fight on.

Trump has also been reluctant to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, started by President Barack Obama, which provides work authorizations to immigrants brought to the US illegally as children.

The proposal has been praised by groups that advocate reduced immigration, including NumbersUSA and the Federation of Immigration Reform.

But backers of stricter immigration limits say allowing unskilled people into the country keeps wages low, especially for workers with only a high-school diploma or less.

United States considering tax reform to protect American jobs
The White House has said it wants to lower corporate and individual tax rates, eliminate deductions and simplify the code. The president plans to turn up the heat on Democratic lawmakers in states he won past year during travel and speeches.

Mr. Cotton said the current immigration system is "an obsolete disaster" in which only 1 immigrant in 15 comes to the US due to their job skills.

It also sets a 50,000 annual cap on refugees, instead of a level mandated by the president. "Second, it cleans up our tangle of employment-based immigration categories by creating a streamlined points system designed to select exceptional talents".

That's because the bill would require 60 votes in the Senate to proceed.

"The bottom line is to cut immigration by half a million people, legal immigration, doesn't make much sense", said Senate Democratic leader Charles Schumer of NY, who called it a "nonstarter".

Framing the bill as a means to cut legal immigration rather than merely replace lower-skilled immigrants with higher-skilled ones will make Schumer's job easier. "This is different than illegal immigration".

The president of Numbers USA, a group seeking tighter immigration limits, said the legislation "will do more than any other action to fulfill President Trump's promises as a candidate to create an immigration system that puts the interests of American workers first".


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