President Donald Trump has sent a letter to members of Congress outlining his administration’s priorities when it comes to immigration reform. According to the letter, the president asked law enforcement professionals their thoughts on improvements that could be made to the immigration system.
“They identified dangerous loopholes, outdated laws, and easily exploited vulnerabilities in our immigration system – current policies that are harming our country and our communities,” Trump writes in the letter.
Attached to the president’s letter were findings outlining three key areas they would like to see addressed in upcoming legislation. Trump stated these topics must be part of legislation to protect young undocumented immigrants brought illegally to the United States as children.
“These findings outline reforms that must be included as part of any legislation addressing the status of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) recipients,” Trump writes. ” Without these reforms, illegal immigration and chain migration, which severely and unfairly burden American workers and taxpayers, will continue without end.”
Border Security: Build a southern border wall and close legal loopholes that enable illegal immigration and swell the court backlog.
- Fund and complete construction of the border wall.
- Authorize the Department of Homeland Security to raise and collect fees from visa services and border-crossings to fund border security and enforcement activities.
- Ensure the safe and expeditious return of Unaccompanied Alien Children.
- End Abuse of our asylum system by tightening standards, imposing penalties for fraud, and ensuring detention while claims are verified.
- Remove illegal border crossers quickly by hiring an additional 370 Immigration Judges and 1,000 ICE attorneys.
- Discourage illegal re-entry by enhancing penalties and expanding categories of inadmissibility.
- Improve expedited removal.
- Increase northern border security.
Interior Enforcement: Enforce our immigration laws and return visa overstays.
- Protect innocent people in sanctuary cities.
- Authorize and incentivize States and localities to help enforce Federal immigration laws.
- Strengthen law enforcement by hiring 10,000 more ICE officers and 300 Federal prosecutors.
- End visa overstays by establishing reforms to ensure their swift removal.
- Stop catch-and-release by correcting judicial actions that prevent ICE from keeping dangerous aliens in custody pending removal and expanding the criteria for expedited removal.
- Prevent gang members from receiving immigration benefits.
- Protect U.S. workers by requiring E-Verify and strengthening laws to stop employment discrimination against U.S. workers.
- Improve visa security by expanding State Department’s authority to combat visa fraud, ensuring funding of the Visa Security Program, and expanding it to high-risk posts.
Merit-Based Immigration System: Establish reforms that protect American workers and promote financial success.
- End extended-family chain migration by limiting family-based green cards to include spouses and minor children.
- Establish a points-based system for green cards to protect U.S. workers and taxpayers.
Democratic leaders responded to the president’s letter by saying Trump’s demands were unreasonable.
.@NancyPelosi & I told @POTUS we were open to reasonable border security alongside #DreamAct -his list goes so far beyond whats reasonable.
— Chuck Schumer (@SenSchumer) October 8, 2017
President Donald Trump fired back a tweet of his own.
The problem with agreeing to a policy on immigration is that the Democrats don’t want secure borders,they don’t care about safety for U.S.A.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 10, 2017
A back and forth, while nearly 800,000 DREAMers wait for a potential compromise that Trump says, is connected to their ability to stay in the United States.