The Atlantic

Can a Decades-Old Immigration Proposal Pass Under Trump?

The RAISE Act, with the backing of the White House, represents the best opportunity for immigration restrictionist groups in 20 years.
Source: Evan Vucci / AP

When President Trump publicly backed a bill to curb legal immigration, he placed a decades-old idea—that until now had been largely sidelined—back into the mainstream.  

Earlier this month, Trump threw his weight behind a modified version of the Reforming American Immigration for a Strong Economy Act, a measure first introduced by Republican Senators Tom Cotton and David Perdue in February that would cut legal immigration to the United States by 50 percent over a decade. “Finally, the reforms in the RAISE Act will help ensure that newcomers to our wonderful country will be assimilated, will succeed, and will achieve the American Dream,” Trump said in an announcement from the White House.

Immigration-restrictionist groups immediately praised Trump’s endorsement. “Seeing the President standing with the bill's sponsors at the White House gives hope to the tens of millions of struggling Americans in stagnant jobs or outside the labor market altogether,” said Roy Beck, the president of NumbersUSA, in a statement. “President Trump is to be praised for moving beyond the easy issue of enforcement,” Mark Krikorian, the executive director of the Center for Immigration Studies, in.

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