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President Donald Trump and his troop of advisers have piggybacked on the agenda of illegal immigration and have depicted an ‘apparent sense of disparity’ towards the growing number of immigrants in the U.S., since his Presidential campaign in 2016, which majorly promised to slow down immigration.
The number of visas issued to foreigners looking forward to immigrating to America for jobs have shown a 25% drop, with the estimated numbers falling down to 462,422 in the 2019 fiscal year from 617,752 in 2016.
In recent weeks too, the Trump administration has used health concerns to justify aggressive restriction in immigration.
Trump Suspends Immigration Indefinitely
President Trump on Monday has announced a 60-day legal ban on immigrants seeking to live and work in America, saying that it could extend depending upon the economic fallout from the coronavirus pandemic.
He said that this ban shall apply only to those seeking green cards and not temporary workers, effectively shutting down the legal immigration system and closing the borders to illegal immigration.
He would allegedly be signing this executive order on Wednesday.
Certain aspects of the order remain unclear inside the administration, including what legal basis Trump would claim to justify shutting down most immigration and how would the government carry on with these proceedings.
The effect the order will have on the operation of US border crossings and on those who already hold green cards, still remained unclear.
What is the Intention behind this Move?
President Trump is committed to protect the health and economic well-being of American citizens in such unprecedented times.
Trump has announced that barring immigration into the U.S., for the time being shall protect American workers from foreign competition once the nation’s economy starts to recover from the COVID-19 outbreak.
Trump’s tweet did not provide any details on when the suspension would go into effect or how long would it last.
According to Trump, “By pausing immigration, we will help put unemployed Americans first in line for jobs as America reopens.
It would be wrong and unjust for Americans laid off by the virus to be replaced with new immigrant labor flown in from abroad. We must first take care of the American worker.”
In practice, much of the US immigration system has already been paralyzed by the pandemic.
Travel from China, parts of Europe and Iran is mostly banned and most state department visa services are suspended.
It has been reported that over 22 million Americans have lost their jobs due to the coronavirus lockdown.
“Decades of record immigration have produced lower wages and higher unemployment for our citizens, especially for African American and Latino workers”, says Trump.
Immigration Rights Groups and Democrats Backlash
It doesn’t come as a surprise that President Trump has always felt a need to establish policies that in some way or the other hamper immigrant lifestyle and influx into America.
He has always believed that immigrants are a drain on American society, drive down wages and take jobs from native-born Americans.
Even before the tweet late night on Monday, immigration into the U.S. had largely been cut off.
Refugee resettlement was put on hold, visa offices were closed and citizenship ceremonies weren’t happening.
Post his announcement on temporarily suspending immigration into the country, Congressional Democrats and Immigration Rights Groups have strongly slammed the President’s decision.
Many slammed that Trump’s action is an attempt to divert attention from his failure to stop the spread of the coronavirus and save lives.
Immigration advocates believe that Trump and advisers are using the state of unrest caused due to pandemic to further tighten the already stringent immigration policies.
Ali Noorani, president of the National Immigration Forum, said: “President Trump’s call to suspend immigration to the US ignores the reality of our situation: the fact is that immigrants are standing shoulder to shoulder with US citizens on the frontlines helping us get through this pandemic.”