President Donald Trump’s second-term agenda on migration and work is short and lacks details, but it is far better than the expansive and detailed cheap-labor promises from Democrat presidential candidate Joe Biden.
If reelected, Trump will “Prohibit American Companies from Replacing United States Citizens with Lower-Cost Foreign Workers,” says the short plan.
“It is short and a lot less than we would live to see, but compared to the Democrat’ plan, it is great,” said Rosemary Jenks, policy director at NumbersUSA. “This is clearly a campaign document, said Jenks. It shows “they are targeting issues based on the demographics they are trying to reach.”
“They could have done more, so it is disappointing,” said Jessica Vaughan, director of policy studies at the Center for Immigration Studies.
But the campaign document shows that Trump and his deputies know that opposition to cheap-labor migration is a vote-winner, said Vaughan. “It is an acknowledgment that this a major problem — and one that would be made worse under a Biden administration,” she said. “That is something Republicans rarely understand until Trump — that bold moves to protect the interests of American workers would get people elected.”
The very short immigration segment of the plan promises to:
END ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION AND PROTECT AMERICAN WORKERS
Block Illegal Immigrants from Becoming Eligible for Taxpayer-Funded Welfare, Healthcare, and Free College Tuition
Mandatory Deportation for Non-Citizen Gang Members
Dismantle Human Trafficking Networks
End Sanctuary Cities to Restore our Neighborhoods and Protect our Families
Prohibit American Companies from Replacing United States Citizens with Lower-Cost Foreign Workers
Require New Immigrants to Be Able to Support Themselves Financially
The plan also promises to:
Enact Fair Trade Deals that Protect American Jobs
Bring Back 1 Million Manufacturing Jobs from China
Tax Credits for Companies that Bring Back Jobs from China
Allow 100% Expensing Deductions for Essential Industries like Pharmaceuticals and Robotics who Bring Back their Manufacturing to the United States
No Federal Contracts for Companies who Outsource to China
Win the Race to 5G and Establish a National High-Speed Wireless Internet Network
Since 2016, Trump’s administration has seen a back-and-forth struggle between populist voters and business donors in the high-stakes economic fight over imported workers, consumers, and renters.
In 2018 and in 2019, Trump overcame stiff opposition from the “swamp” to eventually block illegal blue-collar migration over the southern border. That policy helped push up wages for blue-collar Americans at a faster rate than white-collar wages, but it still leaves millions of illegal migrants in the United States, where they nudge down wages and push up rents.
Since June 2020, Trump has begun to trim the huge inflow of white-collar visa workers that take jobs from U.S. college graduates. That’s is a late and incomplete response to his March 2016 promise: “I will end forever the use of the H-1B as a cheap labor program, and institute an absolute requirement to hire American workers first for every visa and immigration program. No exceptions.”
On August 25, Trump announced he would nominate Chad Wolf to lead the Department of Homeland Security during his second tern. Wolf is a former lobbyist for India-based outsourcing firms.
Trump’s new plan provides no details about how the H-1B and the many other visa programs — such as the huge “Practical Training” programs run via the major universities — would be curbed to protect Americans’ wages and jobs. The plan offers no details on the level of immigration sought by the split administration, even though the immigration levels shape job competition and housing costs.
“It is all very high-level,” said Kevin Lynn, founder of U.S. Tech Workers. “You’d think after four years, they’d have some specific, he said, adding:
What we need to see are the details, the roadmaps, that help people measure their progress. We need clarity because the devil will be in the detail, and they cannot allow the deep state to write the policy — they can make a small exception to drive a Mack [truck] through.
For example, on June 22, Trump directed his duties to block the inflow of many visa workers until at least January and to rewrite regulations that the Americans are not forced out of jobs. However, those regulations have yet to be published, he said.
If Trump gets reelected, he warned, Americans must remain on guard against power-grabs by cheap-labor lobbies, he said.
Biden’s 2020 campaign is promising a nationwide amnesty for illegal immigrants, rapid increases in legal immigration, and a dramatic jump in refugee settlement. Democrats also promise a temporary halt to border enforcement, the inflow of more visa workers, plus a green-card giveaway to many temporary visa workers who already have taken jobs from American graduates.