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The Impact Of United States Presidential Election, 2016 On Immigration

2016-11-18
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When it became clear last Tuesday Donald trump was most likely going to be the next president of the United States, the Canadian immigration site crashed. This was due to incoming traffic from the United States. According to Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada, the Canadian version of the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services, the number of Americans accessing the Canadian Immigration site increased from 17,000 the previous Tuesday to 100,000 on the Tuesday after the election. At the time of the crash, 50% if all traffic on the site originated from the United States.[1]This showed the sentiment many Americans feel towards a Donald Trump Presidency. 
The elections are finally all over and a week has passed. There have been Anti-Trump protests, rallies and hashtags on twitter against a Trump presidency such as the #NotMyPresident, #ImStillWithHer hashtags, suggesting many people opposes the President-Elect Donald Trump. This is evidential by the fact that, although, Donald Trump won the electoral vote by 290 votes to Hillary Clinton’s 232 votes, President-Elect Trump lost the popular votes by a margin of over 200,000 votes. [2]But the question remains, what does a Donald Trump presidency means for United States’ immigration policies? And just how much of Donald Trump’s ten-point immigration plan is really implementable?
Immigration has been one of Donald Trump’s key points during the 2016 U.S. elections. The President-Elect has placed much emphasis on giving jobs back to Americans and deterring U.S. businesses from hiring foreign nations.[6] Donald Trump’s ten-point immigration plan outlines his immigration policy goals for the United States. Let us examine President-Elect Donald Trump’s ten-point immigration plan.
Read also - IMPLICATIONS OF A HILLARY CLINTON OR DONALD TRUMP PRESIDENCY ON US IMMIGRATION POLICIE


How implementable is Trump’s Ten-Point Immigration Plan?
According to Huffington Post contributor, Nolan Rappaport (an Immigration Lawyer), “President-Elect Donald Trump will soon discover that his ten-point immigration plan cannot be implemented.” Is it safe to assume that President-Electdrew up policies and plans on immigration mainly to galvanize support rather than create a workable immigration plan for the United States? [3]

United States-Mexico Border
One of Donald Trump’s promise that was more vocal during his campaign was the proposal to build an impenetrable physical wall along the Southern Border.[8] But just how feasible is this proposal?
Since 1990, the United States has been constructing barriers along the California coast of the U.S. Also, both the Democratic and Republican parties have supported federal bills for the construction of a barrier along the United States-Mexico border. For this reason, 27 democrats including Hilary Clinton voted in favor of the Secure Fence Act of 2006. This bill approved the construction of 700 miles (1000 km) of physical barriers along the United States-Mexico border. In addition, the Secure Border Initiative was an attempt to erect a virtual wall across the entire 2000-mile southern border. This was a very costly failure. This makes it very difficult and unlikely that Trump will succeed in erecting an impenetrable wall along the entire southern United States-Mexico border.
Also, Economists postulate that this idea/proposal can play a part in damaging economic growth in Employment Based Visa For USA  , creating a shortage of labor, which will cause an increase in wages and prices. Donald Trump’s administration wants to deport an approximate 11 million immigrants. The deportation of such a huge number of foreign nationals will lead to a noticeable reduction in the American workforce. This could very likely lead to a fall in actual Gross Domestic Product and potential growth. [5]

End Catch-And-Release
Another proposal of President-Elect is to end catch and release. Catch and release is an occurrence that has been going on for years now. Mexicans caught trying to cross the border without proper documentation are detained and deported back to Mexico. However, The Mexican government cannot accept other foreigners, other than Mexicans (OTMs). This means arrangements have to be made to have them deported to their countries of origin. This takes time. Because the Department of Homeland Security does not have the sufficient available detention facilities to detain these undocumented immigrants, the DHSreleases these individuals and most of the times the DHS never hear from these individuals again. 
A substantial amount of capital is needed in order for the Trump administration to provide the necessary facilities needed to end catch and release. Is this a feasible undertaking? [5]

Zero Tolerance for Criminal Aliens
According to President-Elect Donald Trump’s Ten-Point Immigration Plan, his administration plans on deporting every single immigrant who commits an offense. [7]The United States immigration laws just do not make every criminal offense grounds for deportation. Crimes that can lead to deportation can be found on the Section 237(a) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (I.N.A.). Examples of such crimes include drug-related crimes, domestic violence, fraud, espionage, firearm trafficking, money laundering, sabotage, murder, rape and any form of “aggravated felonies”.  Not every moral turpitude crimes are grounds for deportation of a permanent resident unless it was committed within five years of securing permanent residence status or involves two isolated offenses involving moral turpitude. Also in some cases, crimes,such as Driving Under the Influence (DUI)as a permanent resident, do not result in deportation. How is the Trump administration going to address this issue? [5][10][11][17]
Also, during the Obama Administration, deportation numbers are already the highest ever, with the number of deportees at 2.5 million from 2009 to 2015. [12]

End Sanctuary Cities
Donald Trump’s administration plans to end sanctuary cities (cities that do not cooperate with the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) on matters concerning immigration enforcement). He will need the backing of the United States congress in order to do this, and congressional representatives do not like to cooperate on matters that might affect their constituents negatively.[5][7]

Straightaway Dismissal ofPresident Obama’s Two “Illegal” Executive Amnesties I.E. Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) And Deferred Action for Parents of Americans(DAPA) And Enforce All Immigration
President Barack Obama established the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and Deferred Action for Parents of Americans (DAPA) programs in 2012 and 2014 respectively. The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program allowed temporary lawful status to certain adult immigrants who entered the United States as children. While the Deferred Action for Parents of Americans (DAPA) program offered similar reliefs to certain parents who have children who are lawful permanent residents or citizens of the United States. President-Elect, Donald Trump plans on using his executive authority to cancel both programs. When it comes to enforcing all immigration laws, it is much more of a complex situation. Donald Trump’s Ten-Point Immigration Plan plans on tripling the number of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE)agents. Whereas Hillary Clinton planned only enforcing deportation to immigrants who have committed serious crimes, Donald Trump’s administration hopes to deport all undocumented immigrants even law-abiding and hardworking ones that positively contribute to the United States economy.[7][5]

Suspend the Issuance of Visas to Places Where Satisfactory Screening Cannot Be Guaranteed
The resources and personnel needed to undertake such a screening task is just not available even in countries where it is possible. [5]

Ensuring Other Countries Take Back Their Nationals When the United States Deports Them
According to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), statistics for the fiscal year of 2016 released 19,723 criminal foreign nationals with a total of 64,197 convictions. These convictions include1,347 counts of domestic violence convictions, 1,728 counts of assault convictions, 101 counts of homicide, 12,307 counts of driving under the influence of alcohol convictions.216 counts of kidnapping. 320 counts of sexual assault and 352 counts of commercialized sexual offenses. [4]
Out of all convictions, only 89 criminal foreign nationals were released because their home nations did not agree to take them back. [4][5] This shows the Obama administration is already doing a very good jobwhen it comes to ensuring other countries take back their deported nationals.

The Full Implementation of the Biometric Entry-Exit Visa Tracking System 
This system is supposed to make a record of every entry and exit of a foreign national in and out of the United States. Donald Trump’s administration will make sure this system is available at every air, sea, and land port. This proposal, however, has some drawbacks.
Namely, having such a system implemented at all land ports is nigh impossible. The United States would have to input a million entries every year at the United States-Mexico border alone. There just is not sufficient time to implement this and there would not be sufficient space for exit lanes.
Also, will a biometric entry-exit visa tracking system have any enforcement value? No, the system will identify foreign nationals who have overstayed but the system cannot provide further information on their location. Because of reason, an entry-exit visa tracking system was blocked in 1996.[5]

Turn Off the Jobs and Benefits Magnet
One way to turn off the jobs and benefits magnet is to implement the employer sanctions introduced by the Immigration Reform and Control Act (IRCA) of 1986. People have been trying to implement the employer sanctions of the IRCA since 1986 but to no avail. The employee sanctions of the bill made it illegal to employ undocumented immigrantscontinue to employ undocumented immigrants or employ workers without first checking their identity and employment eligibility.[15]
It is also important to keep in mind that when it comes to the reform of the H-1B program, President-Elect calls for an outright end to the program, which will affect foreign nationals seeking employment in the United States.Donald Trump also calls for an increase in the prevailing income earned by entry-level foreign employees on the H1b visa. This is to discourage U.S. businesses from employing foreign nationals. This will affect the tech sector in particular with both Bill Gates and Mark Zuckerberg calling for an increase in the H1b cap. [9][16]

Reform Legal Immigration to Serve the Best Interests of United States of America and U.S. Workers
The Donald Trump’s administration wishes to reform the legal immigration system (including ending the H-1B program) but that will not happen without strong bipartisan support. This is very unlikely. [5][3][9][7]

 

The Law Offices of Prashanthi Reddy, PLLC - established in the heart of New York City, is a full-service Immigration Law Firm NYC exclusively representing clients in dealing with tough legal matters


Sources

1.    USA Today. 2016. Americans really did crash the Canadian immigration site on Election Day. [ONLINE] Available at: http://www.usatoday.com/story/tech/news/2016/11/10/100000-americans-crashed-canadian-immigration-site/93587034/. [Accessed 14 November 2016].
2.    BBC. 2016. US election 2016: Trump victory in maps. [ONLINE] Available at: http://www.bbc.com/news/election-us-2016-37889032.[Accessed 14 November 2016].
3.    The Huffington Post. 2016. I Expect Our New President To Facilitate Comprehensive Immigration Reform. [ONLINE] Available at:http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/5823361be4b044f827a7956d?timestamp=1478718305376.[Accessed 14 November 2016].
4.    U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). 2016. Breakdown of the Types of Specific Criminal Convictions Associated with Criminal AliensPlaced in a Non-Custodial Setting in Fiscal Year 2015. [ONLINE] Available at: https://oversight.house.gov/wp-content/uploads/2016/04/ICE-FY-15-Stats-cleared22.pdf.[Accessed 14 November 2016].
5.    The Huffington Post. 2016. Is Trump’s Ten-Point Immigration Plan a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing?[ONLINE] Available at:http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/is-trumps-ten-point-immigration-plan-a-tale-told-by_us_57c5ba5fe4b004ff0420dcfc.[Accessed 14 November 2016].
6.    Vox. 2016. Donald Trump’s immigration policy, explained in 600 words. [ONLINE] Available at:http://www.vox.com/2016/11/9/13572030/donald-trump-immigration.
7.    Donald Trump for President. Immigration. [ONLINE] Available at: https://www.donaldjtrump.com/policies/immigration. [Accessed 14 November 2016].
8.    BBC US & Canada. How realistic is Donald Trump's Mexico wall? [ONLINE] Available at: http://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-37243269. [Accessed 14 November 2016].
9.    International Business Times. 2016. What Is The H-1B Visa, And Why Does Donald Trump Want To Kill It?[ONLINE] Available at: http://www.ibtimes.com/what-h-1b-visa-why-does-donald-trump-want-kill-it-2334996[Accessed 15 November 2016].
10.    Cornell University Law School. 2016. 8 U.S. Code § 1227 - Deportable aliens.[ONLINE] Available at: https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/8/1227. [Accessed 15 November 2016].
11.    New York Dialy News. 2015. Legal immigration status can survive minor arrest.[ONLINE] Available at: http://www.nydailynews.com/news/national/legal-immigration-status-survive-minor-arrest-article-1.2394923. [Accessed 15 November 2016].
12.    ABC News. 2016.Obama Has Deported More People Than Any Other President[ONLINE] Available at: http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/obamas-deportation-policy-numbers/story?id=41715661.[Accessed 14 November 2016].
13.    MPI. 2005. The Declining Enforcement of Employer Sanctions[ONLINE] Available at: http://www.migrationpolicy.org/article/declining-enforcement-employer-sanctions.[Accessed 145November 2016].
14.    The Washington Post. 2013. Congress tried to fix immigration back in 1986. Why did it fail?[ONLINE] Available at: https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/wonk/wp/2013/01/30/in-1986-congress-tried-to-solve-immigration-why-didnt-it-work/[Accessed 15 November 2016].
15.    MPI. 2005. Lessons FromThe ImmigrationReform andControl Act of1986. [ONLINE] Available at: http://www.migrationpolicy.org/pubs/PolicyBrief_No3_Aug05.pdf.[Accessed 15 November 2016].
16.    The Washington Post. 2016. Donald Trump flip-flops, then flips and flops more on H-1B visas.[ONLINE] Available at: https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/fact-checker/wp/2016/03/21/donald-trump-flip-flops-then-flips-and-flops-more-on-h-1b-visas/. [Accessed 15 November 2016].
17.    LA Times. 2005. Justices: DUI Not Grounds for Deportation.[ONLINE] Available at: http://www.latimes.com/la-110904scotus_lat-story.html

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