President Trump announced Wednesday night that he will soon ask Congress to pass legislation banning immigrants from accessing public assistance within five years of entering the U.S.
“The time has come for new immigration rules that say … those seeking immigration into our country must be able to support themselves financially and should not use welfare for a period of at least five years,” Trump told a campaign-style rally in Grand Rapids, Iowa.
Trump’s proposal would build on the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996, which allows federal authorities to deport immigrants who become public dependents within five years of their arrival. Many of that law’s provisions were rolled back during the George W. Bush and Barack Obama administrations, but Trump’s proposal would make more categories of federal benefits off-limits to immigrants.
All categories of federal benefits should be off-limits to immigrants.