President offers plan in exchange for border wall investment and crackdown on other undocumented people, among other measures
Donald Trump proposed legislation that would provide a pathway to citizenship for roughly 1.8 million young, undocumented immigrants in exchange for a significant investment in a border wall, a crackdown on undocumented people and sweeping changes to family-based migration policies.
The president’s new framework was outlined by the White House on Thursday amid anticipation on Capitol Hill, as immigration advocates braced themselves for potentially “radical” demands from the president in return for support for the so-called Dreamers.
According to the memo provided by the White House, Trump’s proposal would not only grant a conditional pathway to citizenship for the 700,000 Dreamers, who gained temporary legal status under an Obama-era program and whose fate has been hotly debated for months, but also a much broader group of those who were brought to the US illegally as children. Under the plan, the immigrants could become citizens over a 10 to 12 year period if they met certain requirements and maintained good standing with the law.
The Trump administration is demanding a $25bn “trust fund” to construct a wall along the US-Mexico border and upgrade security at ports of entry and exit along the country’s northern and southern borders.
The proposal places significant restrictions on family-based migration, limiting the family members on whose behalf US citizens could petition to spouses and children, ending categories for siblings and parents. It also calls for the elimination of the state department’s diversity visa lottery, which helps citizens of countries with historically low rates of immigration to come to the US.