March 7, 2021 22:04

Dramatic Immigration Policy Changes Seen Under Biden

Dramatic moves on immigration are expected in the early days of the Biden administration, the Associated Press reports. Joe Biden will likely use executive orders to reverse some of President Donald Trump’s most controversial actions that were a central feature of his administration and important to his base. The Biden administration plans to restore protection for people brought to the U.S. illegally as minors and stop using Pentagon funds to build a border wall. Biden unveiled an ambitious plan on immigration, but it will take time to undo many actions taken by Trump. The incoming president will likely face a divided Congress, making it difficult to enact any kind of sweeping, comprehensive changes to the immigration system. Restricting immigration was a signature issue for Trump, who called Mexicans rapists. His administration banned travelers from predominantly Muslim countries as one of its first acts, took many steps to limit legal immigration and cut the number of refugees allowed in the U.S. by 80 percent.

Biden has said “immigration is central to who we are as a nation,” noting that most Americans can trace their ancestry to immigrants, but it isn’t a core issue. Biden named Cecilia Munoz, President Barack Obama’s top immigration adviser, to his transition team, which some interpreted as signaling a more moderate tack. The 400 miles of the border wall built so far won’t come down but the new administration won’t keep building it or taking money from the Pentagon to fund it over the objections of Congress. The incoming administration plans to reinstate the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, which currently shields from deportation about 650,000 people who came to the U.S. when they were young. Biden plans to overturn the travel ban on people visiting the U.S. from 13 countries, many of them Muslim-majority.

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