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Trump Unveils Immigration Overhaul Plan With GOP’s Praise

Trump Unveils Immigration Overhaul Plan With GOP’s Praise

The White House has circulated among Senate Republicans its legislative framework for an immigration deal including a $25 billion trust fund for border security and a pathway to citizenship for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals-eligible youth.

According to a White House memo provided to reporters, the plan would allow DACA-eligible youth to obtain citizenship after 10 to 12 years with certain requirements, fund a border wall system and hire new immigration personnel, such as immigration judges, law enforcement officials and attorneys. It would also eliminate a visa lottery program and restrict what Republicans call chain migration by barring visa sponsorship for extended family members.

Republicans maintained their stance that a deal must include robust border security provisions in addition to providing legal status to DACA recipients known as “Dreamers,” endorsing the White House’s plan while immigrant advocates swiftly decried it. A spokesperson for leading Dreamer proponent Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., told Law360 that Democrats are scheduled to be briefed on the plan on Monday.

“This framework builds upon the four pillars for reform that the president has consistently put forth, and indicates what is necessary for the president to sign a bill into law,” Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., said in a statement. “I am hopeful that as discussions continue in the Senate on the subject of immigration, members on both sides of the aisle will look to this framework for guidance as they work towards an agreement.”

Trump told last week that he was open to creating an “incentive” for Dreamers of, “after a period of years, being able to become a citizen,” marking the first time that he had endorsed such a pathway to citizenship. That principle was included in his legislative framework for an immigration deal, which was fielded among Republicans late last week.

The plan also notably proposes to reallocate visas to reduce the family-based and high-skilled employment backlog in order to further what Trump has repeatedly referred to as a “merit-based immigration system.” It further proffers the prioritization of criminal immigrants for removal and the removal of illegal border crossers, in part as a means of deterring visa overstays.

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