The following statement was issued by Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR) President Dan Stein while applauding the updated “Reforming American Immigration for a Strong Economy Act” (RAISE) Act, which would replace the outdated, dysfunctional, and unfair immigration system with one that serves the national interest.
“The RAISE Act ends chain-migration by limiting family-based immigration to the nuclear family and replacing the employment-based system with a skills-based point structure. It helps select immigrants who have the tools to succeed in the U.S. while returning immigration to more traditional levels.
“President Trump, and bill sponsors Senators Tom Cotton (R-AR) and David Perdue (R-GA), should be applauded for recognizing the current dysfunction of our outdated immigration policies that, unlike the rest of the nation, have been stuck in a time warp for the last 50 years. The RAISE Act closely follows the bipartisan recommendations of President Clinton’s Jordan Commission, which called for moving the nation to an immigration model that emphasized skills over bloodlines and returned immigration to more traditional levels. These changes will truly make immigration great again.
“Nothing underscores the failure of our current immigration system like the constant clamoring from the business sector for more ‘skilled’ workers, while we import over one million immigrants each and every year, with nearly one-quarter lacking even a high school diploma. The unremitting increase in unskilled immigrants has resulted in depressed wages and working conditions for Americans already struggling to make it in our rapidly changing economy.
“The RAISE Act finally thrusts our immigration system into the 21st Century, recognizing the need for a higher-skilled immigration flow while also acknowledging the importance of keeping nuclear families together in the process. Key components of the bill include:
- Establishes a point-based system that would help select immigrants who have the most to offer this nation and have the skill set needed to achieve once they arrive, while reducing the immigrant flow to traditional levels.
- Ensures that immediate families – the primary immigrant, spouse, and minor children – remain intact during the immigration process.
- Eliminates the needless and fraud-ridden visa lottery.
- Places a responsible, firm limit on refugee admissions at 50,000 per year.
“The RAISE Act would ensure that immigration levels – which currently operate in a vacuum and are unaffected by the unemployment level or the economic needs of the country – would finally begin to serve the national interest. It’s clearly time for this nation to jettison the failed policies of the past and embrace a new paradigm that will do a much better job of selecting immigrants who arrive with the skills they need to make this nation better, while also benefitting themselves and their immediate families.
“The RAISE Act helps realize President Trump’s vision of making America great again by making immigration great again as well. It provides a pathway for a modern, smarter immigration system while protecting those Americans struggling to make ends meet.”
Founded in 1979, FAIR is the country’s largest immigration reform group. With more than 1.3 million members and supporters nationwide, FAIR fights for immigration policies that serve national interests, not special interests. FAIR believes that immigration reform must enhance national security, improve the economy, protect jobs, preserve our environment, and establish a rule of law that is recognized and enforced.