Written by Edward Lai

Republicans Look to Begin the Legal Immigration Debate

During his campaign president-elect Donald Trump fought fiercely over the subject of illegal immigration. However the president’s Republican Party now looks to battle over a subject almost as important– legal immigration.

The current debate about legal immigration is that if the current limitations that have been in place for many years are fair for those looking to legally enter the United States, or should those limitations be made reduced as to eliminate unfair competition for Americans looking for work?

This particular question divides the party’s business wing from its surging populist branch. Currently the business lobbyist and other backers of liberalized immigration laws are waiting to see if the new Trump administration will use their powers to change the legal immigration system.

One possible change could come from the H-1B program which provides visas for skilled workers and has been capped at 85,000 visas per year for over a decade. Supporters of the program state that the demand far outstrips the supply as in the past four years companies have filled the 85,000 cap in the first week alone.

Detractors of the program however are stating that the visa programs allow U.S workers to be displaced by far cheaper foreign hires. These detractors are also stating that they are even global outsourcing companies which rotate workers through the U.S for training.

Green cards issued for employment have also been capped at 144,000 each year since 1990. This cap also has the party split with some saying that the number is too high, while others are stating that it is way too low.

These are just a few questions that President-elect Trump will have to deal with once he takes office next year. While his current stand on immigration is to set up changes that will “serve the best interests of America and its workers,” it does not set a concrete plan on what is to happen in the future.  Trump did however call for measures to keep immigration to historic norms, which many experts believe will call for drastic cut backs in legal visas issued.

While it’s not certain which stance Trump will take it does mean there will be changes in the way America deals with legal immigration. If you or someone you know may be affected by these changes the law offices of Edward Lai Law are willing to help.

For a consultation on your immigration case feel free to contact Edward Lai Law at 510-397-8287.

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