Washington, – President Donald Trump will present on Thursday a plan that seeks to contribute more funds to the wall on the border with Mexico and impose language and knowledge barriers on legal immigrants, to base their arrival in the country more on the ” merit “professional and less in their family ties.
After several failed attempts at immigration reform in his first two years in office, Trump has decided to focus on redesigning the legal immigration system alone, without addressing the situation of the 11 million undocumented immigrants in the country or the limbo in which there are young people called “dreamers”.
This delimitation seeks to win more Republican support for the proposal that Trump will promote this Thursday in a speech and in which his son-in-law Jared Kushner has been working for months, but it is not clear that the Democratic opposition is willing to support a bill that does not face to the situation of the undocumented.
“Our short-term goal is to make clear what the president wants to include in immigration reform, and see if the Republican Party can join” to back that proposal, said a senior US official today, who requested anonymity, at a meeting in the White House with a group of media, including Efe.
The plan would keep intact the number of permanent residence permits – known as “green cards” – granted by the country each year, and that in 2017 were granted to 1.1 million people.
But, if Congress approved the proposal, those permits would begin to be awarded mostly for reasons related to professional specialization or the educational level of immigrants, and not so much for family or humanitarian reasons, explained the source.
To achieve this, the country would subject immigrants seeking a path to citizenship to a test of “citizenship” and judge their “merit” based on several criteria, including their level of English, their age or if they have an offer of job.
Although there is no official language in the country, the White House believes that those who aspire to achieve a “green card” should master that language of majority use, and denies that this filter seeks to exclude immigrants from Latin America or Africa.
“There are people in every country that speaks English,” the official said.
Trump returned today to relate the arrival of undocumented or less qualified immigrants with criminality, although there is no data to support that claim.
“I do not think that most of the countries are sending us their best citizens, that’s what’s happening, and it’s causing us huge problems in terms of crime,” Trump said in a speech to relatives of deceased police officers.
Specifically, his plan aims to increase the proportion of immigrants who obtain permanent residency due to their talent, their studies or their work, from 57% to 66%, to 66% to those who achieve this status through ties family
It also seeks to reduce from the current 22% to 10% the volume of people who obtain the so-called “green card” for humanitarian reasons or to promote diversity.
The project would end the “visa lottery for diversity,” a 1990 program that randomly allocates up to 50,000 visas a year for citizens of countries that traditionally have low rates of immigration to the United States, and that benefit mostly Africans.
The aforementioned official assured that the new system would encourage an even more diverse origin of immigrants than the lottery, although he did not explain how.
He also stated that the plan “would create an accelerated process” to resolve “legitimate” asylum claims, without giving further details. The White House has spent months examining ways to limit the ability of the undocumented, mostly Central Americans, to seek refuge when they reach the border with Mexico.
The text of Trump’s legislative proposal will not be made public this Thursday, but “later”, although the goal is to approve it before the presidential elections of 2020, according to the source.
It remains to be seen, however, that the plan can get a vote from the Democratic opposition, and at least one Republican senator, Susan Collins, has already shown skepticism about a plan that does not solve the situation of the “dreamers”, undocumented They arrived in the country when they were children (EFEUSA).