The Atlantic

The Rust Belt Needs Legal Immigration

President Trump supports a plan that would halve the number of newcomers—and cut off the Midwest’s “demographic lifeline.”
Source: Dominick Reuter / Getty Images

The Rust Belt states that tipped the 2016 presidential election to Donald Trump could be among the biggest losers from the proposed reductions in legal immigration that he has endorsed, according to a new study released Monday.

The study, from the nonpartisan Chicago Council on Global Affairs, concludes that immigration has been “a demographic lifeline” that has helped several Midwestern cities partially reverse decades of population loss among native-born residents.

“For the cities of the Midwest, restricting current immigration levels is the last thing they need: an unnecessary tourniquet applied to a precious supply of new regional residents and workers,” reads the report, written by demographer Rob Paral, a non-resident fellow at the council.

Trump recently endorsed legislation from Republican senators Tom Cotton of Arkansas and

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