Update February 8, at 11:40 am:

In a reminder that immigration is not (or should not be) a partisan issue; and that there are responsible leaders of good will in both parties who believe that immigrants are part of America and should be welcomed, not demonized and scapegoated based on where they come from, their religion or the color of their skins, former president George W. Bush stated on February 7 that, with regard to immigrants:

"We ought to say thank you and welcome them."

Bush also said, concerning DACA recipients, that:

" America's their home."


This is welcome reminder that there are ways to develop rational immigration policies that serve the interests of the American people and promote our deepest values of the dignity and equality of everyone, rather than basing these policies on exclusion and bigotry against immigrants from places that our current president regards as "shithole countries", while trying to overturn fifty years of tolerance and acceptance of non-European immigrants by destroying the family immigration and diversity lottery systems which are at the heart of our immigration system now.

See my original comments below:

On February 6, Trump escalated his obsession with eliminating critically important legal visas which have enabled some 30 for 40 million Asian, African, Latin American and other non-white immigrants to come to the United States in the past few decades and have, according to all expert opinion, reduced the white population of America as a total percentage of the overall ethnic makeup of the nation.

In a White House meeting, Trump told Congressional figures present that he would "love" to see another government shutdown if his demand to eliminate the diversity visa lottery, and family reunification green cards for parents, siblings and adult children of US citizens are not agreed to by Congress.


This takes Trump's previous demands, which were to trade relief for DACA immigrants in return for border wall funding and elimination of the above legal visas, to a new level. The Democrats and other immigration supporters in Congress have agreed to separate DACA from the issue of government funding, so Trump can no longer blame the Dreamers, or their supporters, for that impasse.

Instead, Trump has made his demands for these huge cutbacks in nonwhite immigration, which most serious analysts agree would be the result of eliminating the above two visa proposals, the condition - not for DACA relief, which is now no longer part of shutdown negotiations - but for keeping the entire federal government open.

Why is Trump so strenuously opposed to family reunification green cards, also known by his pejorative term "chain migration" which he called "horrible" in a December 29, 2017 tweet? Why does he want to eliminate the diversity visa lottery, which he called "ridiculous" in the same tweet.

The answer is that both family reunification and the green card lottery (initially called the "AA-1" lottery) were originally enacted in the belief that they would boost white, European immigration to make up for the fact that the 1965 immigration law had abolished the 1924 "national origins" immigration act which favored northern Europe, and replaced it with a system that was open to the the entire world. I have discussed this in more detail in previous comments.

However, neither family reunification nor the current visa lottery system, dating from 1995, had the expected effect of maintaining or bolstering the dominance of white immigrants. Instead, they led to large increases in non-European immigration which had a profound change on the ethnic makeup of America, making the country less white than before, and leading to a future in which the white population could one day become a minority.
As the San Francisco Chronicle reports:

If Trump's plan is not implemented, the white share of the population is expected to fall from above 60 per cent in 2018 to below 45 percent in 2060. The Post's lower estimate of the impact of Trump's proposal show whites staying the majority group until 2046."


In other words, Trump wants to cut back in legal immigration in order to keep, or make, America whiter.

Trump's program for a whiter America could also be looked in broader terms as consisting of three stages. The first stage, which dominated his first year in office, was an expanding of deportation and incarceration to affect non-criminal unauthorized immigrants, in a major reversal of President Obama's (ostensible) policies.

Now, in this second year of the Trump Era, the focus is on gutting the family and diversity lottery-based legal immigration system, in order cut back in non-European immigration. (Immigration from "countries like Norway" will also be impacted too, but not nearly as much, as immigration from what Trump has called the "shithole" countries where people have darker skins.)

What could happen in the third and fourth years of Donald Trump's America? It would not be far fetched to look for a push to nullify the 14th amendment to the Constitution by taking away US citizenship from millions of Latino, Asian and black American-born children based on the immigration status of their parents. This was also a major part of Trump's campaign.

With Donald Trump, no matter how grim the picture may seem at the present for immigration in America, we have to look ahead to the future. It can always get worse. If immigration advocates, the American public, and their elected representatives do not stand up against Trump's vision of Making America White Again, it is very likely to become worse.

Roger Algase
Attorney at Law