White House officials announced a draft immigration reform plan which could become the centerpiece of a post-election 2021 push in Congress.
President Donald Trump publicly endorsed the plan during a cabinet meeting attended by reporters. The plan is “compassionate [and] … the best of everything,” Trump said. “Our country really has a tremendous immigration gap.”
“While this plan doesn’t make every needed change or fulfill every campaign promise, it offers the country a viable path forward in the face of Democrat immigration extremism,” said RJ Hauman, the government relations director at FAIR, which advocates for stronger immigration enforcement.
The plan includes an updated legal immigration system that replaces allowing entry to low-skilled workers with a merit-based system that prioritizes immigrants with special skills. It would also strengthen border security, increase interior enforcement and tighten asylum procedures.
The proposal would also include installing a nationwide federal employment verification program, known as E-Verify, federal program to check whether new employees were legally allowed to work. Conservative groups have long pushed for the program, but big business has lobbied against it. But that may be changing.
The proposed plan would fully fund the border wall — but it would also allow legal migrants to fill jobs.
Overall, the plan is designed to help GOP candidates synchronize their 2020 campaign policies on immigraiton, and also highlight areas where Democrats promote unpopular migration policies, such as open borders and taxpayer aid for illegals.
A White House officials briefed a select group of reporters about the plan. According to a report by Politico:
“We’ve worked with roughly 25 Senate offices in consultation on this legislation, so there’s significant Republican buy-in,” said an administration official briefed on the proposal. “The purpose of today is to bring the Republican party behind a very serious proposal that we can all get behind, and from there we can hopefully engage in negotiations.”
In the cabinet meeting, Kushner sketched the 620-page immigration plan, saying:
In May, the President presented the principles and we got a very, very warm reception on the principles … It is important for us to articulate in this administration what we’re for but to do it in detail and we’re not afraid to put out details because we think this proposal is a good proposal that is really great for America.
The Trump administration, despite what some people say, believes in legal immigration and is against illegal and random migration.
America is by far the greatest country in the world and the greatest honor somebody can have is to become an American citizen. This is s something everyone in the country should value. America deserves to have the best immigration system in the world. We studied a lot of the other countries … [and] we think we can have an immigration system that is the envy of the world and also a border security system that keeps all our citizens safe.
This bill will create a modern merit-based immigration system that allows the best and the brightest throughout the world to compete based on objective criteria to become American citizens.
This bill also creates the gold standard for border security. It was not designed by the politicians. We’ve had a lot of input from politicians but we went to the border security professionals and they told us what they need to secure the border …
I spoke to you all last time about the objectives the President has for his immigration plan. We obviously want to make sure we fully secure our borders, that we protect American wages …
For the first time in 20 years, because of the President’s policies, American wages are rising and they are rising the fastest for the people who are the most vulnerable in the lowes wage categories. We have for the first time more jobs available than people searching for jobs, and we’re bringing more people who aren’t in the workforce into the workforce.
The current [immigration] system imports a lot of low-wage labor. We want to make sure we’re bringing in people who will grow [the economy] and create jobs and do this in a way that we’re not putting downward pressure on wages at the lower levels .
We want to attract the best and brightest … We want to prioritize unification of the immmediate families from the immigration point of view. We want to make sure we have labor in critical industres … We have so much [economic] growth … [that] we have a lot of labor shortages in different industries and we want to make sure we are bringing people who are filling those gaps.
We also have to make sure we preserve our humanitarian values. Right now a lot of people take advantage of the largesse of America. We’re the number one contributor to resettling refugees. We take in a tremendous amount of refugees but we have a lot of people abusing the system and using it as a way to cut the line and to go in front of a system.
Fox's Sean Hannity opposes Dems' green-card giveaway to Indians & the outsourcing biz. 'It would reward employers who literally replace American workers potentially with hundreds of thousands of low cost, less skilled workers.' But 100 GOP Reps back it. https://t.co/tO0p2Jf97X
— Neil Munro (@NeilMunroDC) July 10, 2019
Each year, roughly four million young Americans join the workforce after graduating from high school or university.
But the federal government then imports about 1.1 million legal immigrants and refreshes a resident population of roughly 1.5 million white-collar visa workers — including approximately one million H-1B workers — and approximately 500,000 blue-collar visa workers.
The government also prints out more than one million work permits for foreigners, tolerates about eight million illegal workers, and does not punish companies for employing the hundreds of thousands of illegal migrants who sneak across the border or overstay their legal visas each year.
This policy of inflating the labor supply boosts economic growth for investors because it ensures that employers do not have to compete for American workers by offering higher wages and better working conditions.
This policy of flooding the market with cheap, foreign, white-collar graduates and blue-collar labor also shifts enormous wealth from young employees towards older investors, even as it also widens wealth gaps, reduces high-tech investment, increases state and local tax burdens, and hurts children’s schools and college educations. It also pushes Americans away from high-tech careers and sidelines millions of marginalized Americans, including many who are now struggling with fentanyl addictions. The labor policy also moves business investment and wealth from the heartland to the coastal cities, explodes rents and housing costs, shrivels real estate values in the Midwest, and rewards investors for creating low-tech, labor-intensive workplaces.