The president of one of the largest unions in the United States is praising President Donald Trump’s plans to reform immigration policies.
During Trump’s joint address to the Congress, he called for a merit-based legal immigration system, saying that the current law allowing extended-family chain migration hurts American workers and drives wages down.
In an interview with the Fox Business Network, AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka said his union has been talking about this problem with legal immigration for years, hinting at support for the plan.
“This was the first time the president has talked about legal immigration being used to drive down wages,” Trumka told Fox Business. “We’ve been saying that for a long time.”
Trumka said he was “particularly surprised” that Trump mentioned the problems with legal immigration, as he has in the past largely focused on ending illegal immigration, which is also seen as a strain on the labor market.
“I thought the change in tone signaled — I hope it signaled — that he is ready to start doing business and stop playing for the cameras,” Trumka said of Trump.
Trump’s legal immigration plan is likely to have been influenced by Attorney General Jeff Sessions, who as a Senator was sometimes the lone Republican calling for an end to high levels of legal immigration, also citing that it drove working class households’ wages down.
The AFL-CIO has also praised the Trump White House for the withdrawal the U.S. from the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), as Breitbart News reported.
John Binder is a contributor for Breitbart Texas. Follow him on Twitter at @JxhnBinder.