Cato Decries Trump’s Extreme Vetting: ‘Will Cost Immigrants Thousands’

The Associated Press
The Associated Press

A member of a libertarian think tank, the Cato Institute, is blasting the prospect of President Trump soon enacting “extreme vetting” procedures for foreign nationals seeking entry.

In a piece for the Washington Post, Cato Institute Immigration Analyst David Bier decries the extreme vetting process where most recently the Trump Administration announced that it would begin requiring in-person interviews before any foreign national already in the U.S. on a business visa is granted permanent legal residence through a Green Card.

Despite Trump’s effort to tighten legal immigration rules to prevent not only fraud, but to keep Americans safe, Bier said the new restrictions are too costly for newcomers:

The new forms have complex and vague questions, which will result in mistakes with devastating consequences and will cost immigrants thousands of dollars in attorney’s fees to complete.

Since January, Citizenship and Immigration Services, the agency that processes applications for immigrants, has increased the length of 15 immigration applications — including many of the most commonly required forms — collectively doubling their length from 72 to 162 pages. Each new form also comes with instructions, which also almost doubled in length from 114 to 215 pages. That amounts to a combined total of an additional 191 pages of forms and instruction in less than a year.

Though Bier says increasing the paperwork for foreign nationals is unnecessary, he argues the biggest issue is that it is too expensive:

But the main issue is not the time — it’s the cost. U.S. citizens will need to fill out nine times as many pages to bring over their spouses. Because the new questions are confusing and complex, many immigrants who would not have previously needed a lawyer will now have to hire one. Some attorneys have told me that the forms have already forced them to raise their prices dramatically.

Extreme vetting is an issue that Trump promised to enact during the 2016 campaign, coupled with his skepticism of current immigration levels, where the U.S. currently admits more than one million legal immigrants into the country every year.

Ahead of the election, when voters were asked if they supported Trump’s extreme vetting of foreign nationals trying to make America their home, a Morning Consult poll revealed that voters supported the plan by more than 2 to 1, as Breitbart News reported.

John Binder is a reporter for Breitbart Texas. Follow him on Twitter at @JxhnBinder.


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