Trump Announces Support for Changes to Immigration Policy

This week President Trump announced his support for a major shift in national immigration policy. Trump teamed with Senators David Perdue (R-Ga.) and Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) in support of legislation – the Reforming American Immigration for a Strong Economy (RAISE) Act – that would impose a merit-based immigration system and would curtail the family- and humanitarian-based options for entry into the country. The goal of the proposal would be to limit legal immigration, which hovers around 1 million entrants every year by half, and it would also rescind the diversity lottery as well as cap annual refugee admittances.
The legislation is a stark contrast to the bipartisan legislative attempt in 2013 by the “Gang of Eight,” which AGC largely supported. The RAISE Act is expected to face fierce opposition in Congress as it fails to address the undocumented individuals already in the country, a sticking point for any democrat support.
While AGC supports a merit-based immigration system, AGC is concerned that the legislation could fail to deliver the type and number of workers needed for industries like construction, which is currently facing a widespread domestic worker shortage. AGC is also concerned that the legislation fails to address the undocumented individuals already in the country.
AGC looks forward to working with Congress on an immigration package that fully addresses the broken immigration system by strengthening national security, functions efficiently and fairly, and addresses future workforce needs. AGC also looks forward to continuing to work with Congress and the administration on job training and education proposals that will ensure Americans have the skills necessary for careers in the construction industry.
For more information, contact Jim Young at youngj@agc.org or (202) 547-0133.


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