Now, after months of speculation and decades of failed attempts by many to reform the U.S. immigration system, incumbent new President Joseph Biden is taking a bold step toward fulfilling his campaign promise to overhaul the U.S. immigration system by sending his bill, the U.S. Citizenship Act of 2021. in Congress. Biden`s biggest immigration proposal to date would allow more new immigrants to enter the U.S. and pave the way for legal status for millions of unauthorized immigrants already in the country. The expanded legislation would create an eight-year path to citizenship for the country`s estimated 10.5 million unauthorized immigrants, update the existing family immigration system, overhaul employment-based visa rules and increase the number of diversity visas. In contrast, President Donald Trump`s administration has sought to restrict legal immigration in a variety of ways, including through laws that overhauled the country`s legal immigration system by drastically reducing family immigration. The 2021 U.S. Citizenship Act includes additional protections for family unity that would prevent children from „aging“ outside the system.
Currently, children who turn 21 may no longer be eligible for immigration benefits because they depend on their parents` applications for permanent residence. The Child Status Protection Act currently provides for certain exceptions so that children who reach the age of 21 continue to be entitled to immigration benefits. The bill would expand these safeguards. „Our current immigration system is broken, does not treat people with dignity, separates families, and undermines our economy and security. The legalization of undocumented immigrants, many of whom have lived and worked in the United States for more than 10 years and are deeply rooted in the community, deserves an opportunity to join the American family. Similarly, for too long, the U.S. immigration system has ignored the talents of highly educated immigrants, many of whom left the U.S. or immigrated to friendlier countries.
Biden`s immigration bill is an excellent first step in modernizing an outdated system and reinventing how our immigration laws should reflect our character as a nation of immigrants. In total, more than 35 million legal immigrants live in the United States; Most are U.S. citizens. Many live and work in the country after obtaining legal permanent residency, while others obtain temporary visas for students and workers. In addition, approximately 1 million unauthorized immigrants have temporary permission to live and work in the United States under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals and Temporary Protected Status programs. In addition, the proposed legislation seeks to further change the tone of the U.S. immigration system by changing the current wording of immigration laws and laws. A long-standing linguistic point of contention is the use of the term „alien“ in relation to foreigners and non-citizens throughout the Immigration and Nationality Act and its regulations. The U.S. Citizenship Act of 2021 proposes to replace the term „alien“ with „non-citizens“ in all federal immigration laws. The Senate is considering several immigration provisions in a spending bill, the Reconstruction for the Better Act, which the House passed in November 2021. While passage of the law is uncertain — as is the inclusion of immigration reforms in the final version of the law — the legislation would make an estimated 7 million unauthorized immigrants eligible for protection from deportation, work permits and driver`s licenses.
Over the past four years, the Trump administration has issued numerous executive orders and regulations restricting immigration, some of which have been deemed discriminatory. Most notably, one of President Donald Trump`s first executive orders, often referred to as a „Muslim ban,“ was immediately rescinded by a separate presidential proclamation. Through a provision of the 2021 U.S. Citizenship Act called the NO BAN Act, the Biden administration seeks to „prohibit discrimination based on religion and limit the president`s power to issue future bans.“ This law prevented lawful permanent residents from receiving most means-tested public benefits, including welfare, Medicaid, food stamps, supplemental security income (SSI) and others, regardless of how long they stay in the United States or participate in the Social Security program. Allowed for the inclusion of a sponsor`s income in the calculation of income in the needs assessment and made the affidavit of immigrant support legally enforceable.