Exclusive–Cuccinelli: Trump’s ‘Public Charge’ Ensures New Immigrants No Longer Burden American Taxpayers

The Associated Press
The Associated Press

President Trump’s newly implemented “Public Charge” rule ensures that American taxpayers are no longer burdened by a massive inflow of legal immigrants who cannot support themselves, Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Acting Deputy Secretary Ken Cuccinelli says.

In an exclusive interview with SiriusXM Patriot’s Breitbart News Daily, Cuccinelli said Trump’s initiative to more effectively regulate legal immigration to the U.S. now requires that legal immigrants prove their ability to support themselves financially before they are given permanent residence.


“[The rule] basically says that if you want to stay here as a longterm legal immigrant, you have to be able to take care of yourself or make arrangements to be financially independent … and not become a public charge,” Cuccinelli said.

“What it means is that people who apply today and after for a green card … we will filter through their ability to stand on their own two feet economically, whether it’s earning their own way or whether they have family that supports them who commit to doing so … to make sure that the American taxpayers aren’t going to be bearing the burden of new immigrants,” Cuccinelli continued.

The rule, as Breitbart News reported, will keep legal immigrants known to be a public charge to American taxpayers from permanently resettling in the U.S. This means legal immigrants in the country taking Supplemental Security Income (SSI), food stamps, and certain taxpayer-funded housing programs will be less likely to secure a green card.

Cuccinelli said that while elected Democrats now oppose certifying that legal immigrants are self-sufficient — so as not to force American taxpayers to foot the bill for their welfare — they supported the plan in the late 1990s.

“The law we’re working from was passed in 1996 and signed by Bill Clinton. Steny Hoyer voted for it, Chuck Schumer voted for it … and no administration prior to the Trump administration had actually put a rule in place to actually implement these [regulations] in any meaningful way,” Cuccinelli said.

Cuccinelli said DHS Is “ready to roll” in terms of implementing the Public Charge rule and that there is “still more to come” on reforms to the legal immigration system, as 1.2 million legal immigrants continue to be admitted to the U.S. on green cards every year.

Currently, there is an estimated record high of 44.5 million foreign-born residents living in the U.S. This is nearly quadruple the immigrant population in 2000. The vast majority of those arriving in the country every year are low-skilled legal immigrants who compete against working and middle-class Americans for jobs.

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


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