Trump Proposes New Legislation that Would Seriously Limit Immigration

President Trump recently unveiled his new immigration plan, which would halve the number of legal immigrants allowed into the country and place additional requirements for admission, making it much more difficult to immigrate to Illinois and elsewhere. The legislation, which was proposed by Senators Tom Cotton of Arkansas and David Perdue of Georgia, would greatly curb family-based immigration while moving to a system in which merit would be emphasized. If the legislation passes, legal immigration would drop from 1 million people per year to 600,000 annually within one year and 500,000 annually within the next decade. An immigration lawyer in Chicago helps clients with obtaining family-based immigration approvals as well as business visas and might answer questions about how the proposed law might affect the immigration process.

What the Legislation Would Do

Called the Reforming American Immigration for a Stronger Economy Act, the RAISE Act would cut in half the number of refugees that would be admitted into the U.S. annually. It would also place severe limits on the ability of people to immigrate to the U.S. in order to join their family members and end the diversity lottery system, which offers visas on a lottery basis to countries with low immigration rates to the U.S. Would-be immigrants would be scored according to a point system based on their age, English skills, educational level and job offers. Extra points would be granted to applicants who have received the Nobel Prize or who have been in the Olympics. The bill would eliminate the EB-5 visa program and replace it with points for investments of at least $1.35 million and more points for investments of at least $1.8 million.

Why the Legislation is Controversial

The proposed law is controversial for several reasons. A major point category is an English-speaking ability requirement and immigrants would need to score at least 30 points total. This would severely limit the ability of people who do not have a good command of English to immigrate. Farms and other businesses who depend on low-skilled workers would also likely suffer because of the difficulty that they have with filling their positions with American workers. Highly skilled workers would have an easier time immigrating to the U.S. than would all other categories of immigrants. The proposed law is unlikely to pass in its present form. An immigration lawyer in Chicago can help businesses and families with their visa needs.