Trump Outlines 'Merit-Based' Immigration Plan, Still Far From Becoming Law
May 16, 2019 5:00 AM ET
President Trump has announced an immigration proposal that would dramatically reshape the legal immigration system in the United States.
The plan "puts jobs, wages and safety of American workers first," Trump said in the White House Rose Garden on Thursday [5/16/19]. […]
The plan would prioritize merit-based immigration, limiting the number of people who could get green cards by seeking asylum or based on family ties. But it would keep immigration levels static, neither increasing or decreasing the number of people allowed to legally enter the U.S. each year.
What’s Missing in Trump’s ‘Beautiful, Bold’ Immigration Plan
His proposal represents another lost opportunity.
By The Editorial Board
New York Times
May 16, 2019
Assembled over the past several months by Jared Kushner, Mr. Trump’s son-in-law and senior adviser, this proposal does not address some of the thorniest elements of the immigration debate. Most notably, it avoids the question of what to do about the 1.8 million immigrants brought to the United States illegally as children and protected from deportation under an Obama-era program, Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA. No proposal that fails to grapple with this vulnerable population will be taken seriously by Democrats — nor should it be.
The plan also does not address how to bring the roughly 11 million undocumented immigrants living in the United States out of the shadows.
Instead, as the president indicated, Mr. Kushner limited his focus on beefing up border security and reworking the legal immigration system.
On border security, the plan sticks with many of the administration’s aims to which Democrats have objected, such as overturning the prohibition on holding child migrants in custody for no more than 20 days, deporting unaccompanied minors back to their home countries, having some asylum-seekers remain in their home countries while their requests are processed and, of course, building the wall. […]
In terms of legal immigration, Mr. Kushner’s plan proposes a “merit-based” system, moving away from the program that gives priority to reunifying families that has been in place since the 1960s. The number of visas granted on humanitarian grounds would be reduced, and the diversity visa lottery would be eliminated altogether.