With tens of millions of Americans who want to work fulltime unable to do so, most immigration at this moment makes no sense, and the President appears to be moving in the right direction to curtail it.
Pres. Trump's Tweet a few hours ago indicates a sensitivity to a primary purpose of immigration laws of every country, and that is to protect a nation's vulnerable workers from harmful competition.
To continue most immigration at this time would show a callous disregard for those Americans who are enduring deep economic suffering.
Just before midnight Monday, the President tweeted:
In light of the attack from the Invisible Enemy, as well as the need to protect the jobs of our GREAT American Citizens, I will be signing an Executive Order to temporarily suspend immigration into the United States!
Much remains unclear at this moment as to how the promised Executive Order would affect all permanent immigration categories (with their lifetime work permits) or guestworker categories such as the H-1B and H-2B visas.
If the President indeed stops most new immigration for now, he would appear to be in line with majority public opinion. In an April 9-10 survey, USA Today/Ipsos polling found that 79% of Americans supported temporarily stopping immigration from all countries.
Even before the Covid-19 pandemic struck the United States, running permanent immigration on auto-pilot at a rate of more than a million a year was a federal foreign-worker program disconnected from the sad reality found in stories that filled the news media about economic hopelessness among some segments of the country.
The pandemic adds urgency and a justification for executive action to temporarily halt most immigration and guest worker programs during this current jobs collapse. But when the pandemic is over, the nation needs a Congress that finally will put the American worker first and that will stop driving down wages with an immigration program that widens economic inequality by taking from poor Americans and giving to the rich.
ROY BECK is Founder & President of NumbersUSA
Updated: Tue, May 5th 2020 @ 3:40am EDT