Sat | Sep 23, 2017

Trump calls for merit-based US immigration system

Published:Tuesday | February 28, 2017 | 2:58 PM
President Donald Trump

United States president, Donald Trump has called for a merit-based system to deal with immigration issues he says have been affecting the country.

The Republican made the calls as he delivered his first address to a joint sitting of the US Congress.

His election campaign focused heavily on pledges to reform the immigration system. 

SEE BELOW, EXCERPT OF TRUMP'S SPEECH ON IMMIGRATION:

I am going to bring back millions of jobs.

Protecting our workers also means reforming our system of legal immigration.

The current, outdated system depresses wages for our poorest workers, and puts great pressure on taxpayers.

Nations around the world, like Canada, Australia and many others — have a merit-based immigration system.

It is a basic principle that those seeking to enter a country ought to be able to support themselves financially.

Yet, in America, we do not enforce this rule, straining the very public resources that our poorest citizens rely upon.

According to the National Academy of Sciences, our current immigration system costs America's taxpayers many billions of dollars a year.

Switching away from this current system of lower-skilled immigration, and instead adopting a merit-based system, will have many benefits: it will save countless dollars, raise workers' wages, and help struggling families — including immigrant families — enter the middle class.

I believe that real and positive immigration reform is possible, as long as we focus on the following goals: to improve jobs and wages for Americans, to strengthen our nation's security, and to restore respect for our laws.

If we are guided by the well-being of American citizens then I believe Republicans and Democrats can work together to achieve an outcome that has eluded our country for decades.