White House Considers Tougher Rules as Part of Immigration Overhaul

White House Considers Tougher Rules as Part of Immigration Overhaul


Gabriella Demczuk for The New York Times

Originally published by NY Times

White House officials are circulating a set of hard-line immigration proposals — including the hiring of 10,000 new immigration enforcement agents — to House Republicans alarmed by President Trump’s pledge to protect around 800,000 so-called Dreamers.

The outline, drafted by Mr. Trump’s top policy adviser, Stephen Miller, and the Domestic Policy Council, should be seen as an administration wish list rather than a set of demands, according to an official involved directly in the drafting.

The official said congressional approval of the new proposals is not required as part of Mr. Trump’s pledge to extend the Deferred Action on Childhood Arrivals program, or DACA, which protects undocumented migrants brought into the country as children. But, the official said, they represent an overdue statement of immigration principles, as requested by conservative legislators as they wade into the difficult issue of an overhaul of the immigration system.

The plan, obtained from a Democratic staff member who received it from a Republican member of Congress, would almost certainly negate the tentative agreement reached two weeks ago by Mr. Trump, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer of New York and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi of California to preserve DACA and defer other immigration actions.

Sarah Huckabee Sanders, the White House press secretary, told reporters on Monday that the White House intends to release a broad set of immigration proposals soon.

“We will be putting out specific principles that the White House supports and would like to see done legislatively,” Ms. Sanders said.

Two White House officials later said that the blueprint, first reported by McClatchy, represented a menu of options being considered. But it did not signal Mr. Trump’s timetable for moving on the proposal, or what he might ultimately decide.

Congressional Democratic leaders declined on Tuesday to comment on the document. They said they would wait for Mr. Trump to issue a formal request as he pieces together a legislative package to preserve the status of the Dreamers and still honor his get-tough campaign pledge to crack down on illegal immigration and build a border wall with Mexico.

A House Democratic leadership aide called the proposal a “complete nonstarter” and “not a serious document.” The aide, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said it does not reflect the agreement the president made with Mr. Schumer and Ms. Pelosi.

The blueprint also includes a handful of proposals that have already been mentioned by the Trump administration or that have been included in Republican legislative proposals.

They fall into three broad categories: securing the border; placing new restrictions on legal immigration to protect American workers, a focus for Mr. Miller; and increased enforcement of immigration laws within United States borders, as made possible by a major expansion of the agent force for the Department of Homeland Security.

Other proposals include eliminating protections for unaccompanied, undocumented minors; restricting asylum for adults and children; implementing an online system that allows businesses to quickly check the immigration status of an applicant; and increasing fees for visa applications.

Read more: www.nytimes.com/2017/09/26/us/politics/white-house-immigration-rules-draft.html?mcubz=0


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