‘Public Charge’ Rule Released to Deny Green Cards for Immigrants Who Use Food Stamps

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The Trump administration released a regulation on Monday that would make it harder for immigrants who use public assistance such food stamps, Medicaid, or other forms of welfare to receive green cards and become U.S. citizens.

The “public charge rule” under federal law already requires immigrants who seek to remain in the U.S. legally to prove they are self-sufficient, but the regulations released Monday would detail additional hurdles for those who do receive welfare benefits.

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services officers currently weigh factors such as wealth, household income, and education as to whether or not to grant a foreigner legal status.

Those receiving welfare such as food stamps would have to prove to immigration officials that they are self-sufficient enough to live in the U.S. without public assistance.

The rules are among the Trump administration’s most aggressive attempts to get people off welfare and curb legal immigration.

“We want to see people coming to this country who are self-sufficient,” U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) Director Ken Cuccinelli said. “That’s a core principle of the American Dream. It’s deeply embedded in our history, and particularly our history related to legal immigration.”

A filing of the policy in the federal register states that the public charge rule will go into effect in October

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