1.8M Dreamers Could Get Citizenship in New WH Plan

In return, White House wants $25B for Trump's wall, massive cuts to legal immigration
By Michael Harthorne,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 25, 2018 6:09 PM CST
1.8M Dreamers Could Get Citizenship in New WH Plan
Demonstrators rally in support of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) outside the Capitol, Sunday, Jan. 21, 2018, in Washington, on the second day of the federal shutdown.   (AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana)

The White House has released what it calls a "compromise" plan on immigration that gives 1.8 million Dreamers a chance at citizenship—but also includes a host of anti-immigration moves that Democrats are likely to find unacceptable, CNN reports. “This is kind of a bottom line for the president,” Reuters quotes a senior White House official as saying. The plan unveiled Thursday would provide a possibility of citizenship—contingent on "work, education, and good moral character"—to 1.8 million undocumented immigrants brought to the US as children, USA Today reports. That's a million more Dreamers than were protected by DACA. The White House calls it a "dramatic concession" to Democrats.

In return for that concession, the White House is asking for a $25 billion "trust fund" to build parts of President Trump's long-promised wall on the Mexican border and improve security on the Canadian border. More money would go to additional border guards and immigration judges. The plan restricts family-based immigration to only spouses and minor children. That change represents a 25% reduction in legal immigration into the US—about 250,000 people per year. The plan also ends the visa lottery system, which provides 50,000 visas a year to people from countries under-represented in the US. Another part of the plan closes what the White House calls "legal loopholes" in order to allow for the deportation of more immigrants. White House senior adviser Stephen Miller says the goal is to get 60 votes in the Senate; it's unclear enough Democrats will support the plan for that to happen. (Read more immigration stories.)

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