The Poison Pill(s)? Trump Immigration Plan Demands Tough Concessions From Democrats

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You no doubt have heard by now but, as reported by the New York Times, President Trump proposed legislation yesterday that would provide a path to citizenship for as many as 1.8 million undocumented immigrants in exchange for an end to decades of family-based migration policies, a costly border wall and a vast crackdown on other immigrants living in the country. But the new plan — drafted by Stephen Miller, the president’s hard-line domestic policy adviser, and John F. Kelly, the White House chief of staff — was immediately rejected by Democrats, immigration advocates and some Republicans, with some describing it as nothing but an attempt to rid the country of immigrants and shut the nation’s borders. Republican and Democratic senators are working on a narrower immigration plan of their own. They hope that if it can pass the Senate, it will put pressure on the House to pass the legislation as well.

Here is the proposal: Download White-House-Framework-on-Immigration. And here it is reprinted in full:

WHITE HOUSE FRAMEWORK ON IMMIGRATION REFORM & BORDER SECURITY

BORDER SECURITY: Securing the Southern and Northern border of the United States takes a combination of physical infrastructure, technology, personnel, resources, authorities, and the ability to close legal loopholes that are exploited by smugglers, traffickers, cartels, criminals and terrorists.

• The Department of Homeland Security must have the tools to deter illegal immigration; the ability to remove individuals who illegally enter the United States; and the vital authorities necessary to protect national security.

• These measures below are the minimum tools necessary to mitigate the rapidly growing surge of illegal immigration.

o $25 billion trust fund for the border wall system, ports of entry/exit, and northern border improvements and enhancements.

o Close crippling personnel deficiencies by appropriating additional funds to hire new DHS personnel, ICE attorneys, immigration judges, prosecutors and other law enforcement professionals.

o Hiring and pay reforms to ensure the recruitment and retention of critically-needed personnel.

o Deter illegal entry by ending dangerous statutorily-imposed catch-and-release and by closing legal loopholes that have eroded our ability to secure the immigration system and protect public safety.

o Ensure the detention and removal of criminal aliens, gang members, violent offenders, and aggravated felons.

o Ensure the prompt removal of illegal border-crossers regardless of country of origin.

o Deter visa overstays with expedited removal.

o Ensure synthetic drugs (fentanyl) are prevented from entering the country.

o Institute immigration court reforms to improve efficiency and prevent fraud and abuse.

DACA LEGALIZATION: Provide legal status for DACA recipients and other DACA-eligible illegal immigrants, adjusting the time-frame to encompass a total population of approximately 1.8 million individuals.

• 10-12 year path to citizenship, with requirements for work, education and good moral character.

• Clear eligibility requirements to mitigate fraud.

• Status is subject to revocation for criminal conduct or public safety and national security concerns, public charge, fraud, etc.

PROTECT THE NUCLEAR FAMILY: Protect the nuclear family by emphasizing close familial relationships.

• Promote nuclear family migration by limiting family sponsorships to spouses and minor children only (for both Citizens and LPRs), ending extended-family chain migration.

• Apply these changes prospectively, not retroactively, by processing the “backlog.”

ELIMINATE LOTTERY AND REPURPOSE VISAS: The Visa Lottery selects individuals at random to come to the United States without consideration of skills, merit or public safety.

• This program is riddled with fraud and abuse and does not serve the national interest.

• Eliminate lottery and reallocate the visas to reduce the family-based “backlog” and high-skilled employment “backlog.”

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Needless to say, there is great controversy over the proposal. Dara Lind on Vox explains the proposal. Stay tuned!

This post originally appeared on Law Professor Blogs © 2014-2018 by Law Professor Blogs, LLC. All rights reserved. Reprinted with permission.


About The Author

Kevin Johnson Kevin Johnson is Dean, Mabie-Apallas Professor of Public Interest Law, and Professor of Chicana/o Studies. He joined the UC Davis law faculty in 1989 and was named Associate Dean for Academic Affairs in 1998. Johnson became Dean in 2008. He has taught a wide array of classes, including immigration law, civil procedure, complex litigation, Latinos and Latinas and the law, and Critical Race Theory. In 1993, he was the recipient of the law school's Distinguished Teaching Award.Dean Johnson has published extensively on immigration law and civil rights. Published in 1999, his book How Did You Get to Be Mexican? A White/Brown Man's Search for Identity was nominated for the 2000 Robert F. Kennedy Book Award. Dean Johnson’s latest book, Immigration Law and the US-Mexico Border (2011), received the Latino Literacy Now’s International Latino Book Awards – Best Reference Book. Dean Johnson blogs at ImmigrationProf, and is a regular contributor on immigration on SCOTUSblog. A regular participant in national and international conferences, Dean Johnson has also held leadership positions in the Association of American Law Schools and is the recipient of an array of honors and awards. He is quoted regularly by the New York Times, Los Angeles Times, and other national and international news outlets.


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