Trump to unveil plan to HALVE legal immigration by 2027 with massive reform to create ‘skills-based’ entry system

Wednesday, August 2, 2017
By Paul Martin

Bill that’s backed by the White House would replace the current immigration system with a ‘skills-based immigration system’
The immigration system currently weighs familial ties in deciding who gets to come to the US
Sens. Tom Cotton and David Perdue are introducing legislation to change that
Trump told Congress in a February address that he wants a ‘merit-based’ system
‘We will have so many more benefits,’ he contended. ‘It will save countless dollars, raise workers’ wages, and help struggling families’

By Francesca Chambers, White House Correspondent
2 August 2017

President Donald Trump will endorse a plan this morning that would halve legal immigration levels beginning in 2027.

Stephen Miller, a senior advisor to the president has been working on the legislation with two Republicans senators, David Perdue and Tom Cotton.

A spokeswoman for Sen. Cotton told the Weekly Standard in advance of the measure’s unveiling that the bill would create a ‘skills-based immigration system.’

‘Our current immigration system is outdated and doesn’t meet the diverse needs of our economy,’ said Cotton aide Caroline Rabbitt.

The immigration system currently weighs familial ties in deciding who gets to come to the US. Cotton and Perdue – and Trump – want candidates with the most valuable skills to jump to the front of the line.

Only a fifth of immigrants coming to the US currently are being admitted based on job-based factors, according to the New York Times.

Migration Policy Institute data from 2014 shows that 64 percent of immigrants were immediate family members or sponsored family members of American citizens, while 15 percent we admitted because of their skill set.

Another 13 percent of immigrants were admitted through the refugee and asylum programs and five percent won their entry through the State Department’s diversity lottery.

Trump told Congress in his first joint address to lawmakers in February that he wants to switch to a ‘merit-based’ system of immigration.

‘It’s a basic principle that those seeking to enter a country ought to be able to support themselves financially, yet in America, we do not enforce this rule, straining the very public resources that our poorest citizens rely upon,’ Trump said.

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