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Donald Trump announces new merit-based immigration plan

The US president will unveil on Thursday a plan to overhaul the US immigration system that would increase the level of training requirements and skills of foreign workers.

This is an important moment in his term, Donald Trump knows he is expected to turn on the subject of immigration. He will unveil on Thursday a plan to overhaul the US immigration policy with a reinforcement of border security and a system favoring foreign workers speaking English and having a job offer.

This redesign was thought by the chief advisers of the president: Jared Kushner, his son-in-law, and Stephen Miller. It aims to rally the Republican Party as the 2020 presidential election approaches on a matter that is struggling to gather even in Donald Trump’s camp.

60% of visas awarded on merit

This plan proposes to change the approach to legal immigration. It would provide immigrants with skills or specific job opportunities to work in the United States, provided they can demonstrate proficiency in English and education, and pass a civic education exam. . Family reunification will be more difficult to achieve.

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Trump’s advisors have studied the migration policies of Canada, Australia and New Zealand, and have drawn on elements of how to guide immigration. Currently, 12% of immigration to the United States is based on employment and skills, compared to 63% in Canada and 68% in Australia. The advisers wish to reverse the trend by aiming for a rate of 60% of visas attributed to merit.

For decades, immigration laws in the United States have prioritized family reunification, and every year nearly two-thirds of the recipients of the “green card” (permanent resident card) are close relatives of people residing in the United States. already in the United States. Under this plan, the same number of immigrants would be allowed to enter the country, with 1.1 million arrivals per year, only the composition would be changed.

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The draft drafted by Donald Trump’s close advisers also calls for tougher border controls and the construction of new border gates at the southern border. The elimination of the “lottery”, which offers a chance for immigration candidates to obtain a permanent resident card through a draw, is also planned.

A project that might not be unanimous

The project carried by the White House will hardly be able to pass the stage of the American Congress. The Democrats, who control the House of Representatives, reportedly said they would not vote because of some unresolved issues such as the fate of the “Dreamers” , the migrants who arrived illegally in the United States with their parents when they were minors.

Beyond the Democrats, some Republicans might not vote the project that is moving away from the grassroots of Donald Trump voters. This vision of merit-based immigration would increase immigrants’ overall level of education and wage level, putting them in competition with some Americans for employment. In addition, the proposal does not include any reduction in the level of legal immigration, a clear demand from Trump voters when he was elected in November 2016.

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Donald Trump will present an overview of this project, the details of which will be unveiled in a “very large document” to be published in the coming weeks.

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