• Trump Wants Free Green Cards for Every College Grad

    July 3, 2024

    Tags: , , , , ,
    Posted in: Democracy, Trump

    In a move which both is self-defeating and which exposes the fundamental problem with America’s immigration system, Donald Trump proposed “automatically” giving green cards to foreign nationals who graduate from a U.S. college.

    A Trump spokesperson clarified the offer to include both two-year and junior colleges, and to include every foreign student except those who are “communists, radical Islamists, Hamas supporters, America haters, and public charges.” Trump said this was another “Day One” plan for him. The goal is to “to keep the most skilled graduates who can make significant contributions to America.” Currently foreign national college grads have to either leave the U.S. after graduation, work for two years as “practical trainees” and then depart, or apply for a hard-to-get work visa/change of status.

    The plan of course is self-defeating on its face. Trump, like most people who read it, thinks his plan will scoop up the PRC MIT A.I. PhD with the 4.0 GPA who wants to work for NVidia, forgetting America’s college system includes pay-for-play schools, visa mills, aimed directly at foreigners who just want a student visa to allow them to work in the U.S., at whatever job. Trump also forgets perhaps his own college days, which must have included a kid who just barely got by and graduated with a C- average in Medieval Music Theory. Not much demand for that, from American or foreign grads. Once again, in order to get the baby America is drinking the bathwater, too.

    The concept of a merit-based system in the U.S. is not new. Trump 45 flirted with the idea but never moved to implement it. Even Hillary Clinton proposed a plan to link college grads to green cards. Since 1965 the American immigration system has been tied to the concept of family unification, with little interest paid to anything merit-based. The core problem with the family reunification system is the primary qualification to immigrate legally is simply that family tie. So America gets the drunk brother alongside the nuclear physicist sister. It’s a crap shoot. There is no connection to America’s economic needs. You get the nuclear physicists from Stanford but you also get the drunk modern art appreciation majors from Podunk U. Things work similarly at the border, where America gets whomever survives the Darwinian slog through Mexico. The family reunification system is a legal hangover, as would be Trump’s plan to gift each college grad with a green card.

    The American family unification system, with its small number of merit-based visas tagging along (mostly in the H-1B category) is near unique in the industrialized world. Britain, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand use primarily a merit system based on “points.” Based on national needs, an applicant with no relatives in Canada will accrue points based on education (Canada awards 135 points for a Master’s, only 30 for a high school diploma), language ability (extra points toward immigration up north if you are fluent in English and French), and job skills. But you may not need a master’s in computer technology for Canada: they’ll take you if you’re a quantum engineer, but they’ll also take you if you are a tar sands miner willing to live five years in the unsettled west. The key is tying merit-based points to the nation’s economic needs.

    The U.S. is stingy with the merit-based visas it does offer. Out of a total legal immigrant pool of about one million, the annual cap for the 2023 fiscal year was 65,000 skilled worker visas, plus only an additional 20,000 visas for foreign professionals with a master’s degree or doctorate from a U.S. institution. However, not all H-1B visas are subject to this cap. For example, up to 6,800 visas are set aside each year for the H-1B program under the U.S.-Chile and U.S.-Singapore free trade agreements. Something special about skilled people in Chile compared to, whatever, Columbia? Back to that baby and his bathwater.

    Through the end of the 19th century, America essentially had no immigration law. The country was huge, land was available for the taking, and the need for unskilled workers seemed bottomless. The waves of Germans, Irish, Jews, and Italians came from every dump across Europe and beyond. They entered an America where New York City was a center of light manufacturing and the source of more than half of all ready-made clothing, and the vast Midwest was blanketed with farms and steel plants hungry for workers. This system gave way as the first real immigration laws, targeting the Chinese, who were no longer needed to build the railways out west. Following WWI, Italians and eastern European Jews, who were considered “inferior,” were banned. Racism played a significant role, but it dovetailed more than coincidentally with an economy that was shrinking (ultimately, the Great Depression) and demanding more skilled workers.

    The years following WWII saw a massive change in immigration law. In the booming post-war economy, it was believed there was room for everyone again, and old racial wrongs were righted by removing national quotas and emphasizing family unification. Most post-war immigrants, unlike those of the great waves of the 19th and early 20th centuries, were the relatives of earlier immigrants. Little attention was paid to who these people were, what education and skills they had and, most significantly, what the needs of the American economy were in comparison. This is the system largely in place today.

    But what if we can do better, a lot better, for the needs of the 21st century?

    The monetary reasons are there, what Trump is aiming for. Immigrants and their children founded nearly half of the Fortune 500 companies. These include 5 of the top 12: NVidia, founded by a Taiwan national with a Master’s from Stanford; Apple; founded by the son of a Syrian, no degree; Google, cofounded by a Russian immigrant, also with an M.A. from Stanford; Amazon, founded by the son of a Cuban immigrant with a degree from Princeton; and Costco, founded by the son of Canadian immigrants (San Diego City College) whose family emigrated from Romania. These companies alone posted a combined revenue of $1.4 trillion in fiscal year 2023, more than the gross domestic product of many nations. And immigrants are about 80 percent more likely to start a company than U.S.-born citizens.

    And that’s not to say someone else, in this instance the UK, hasn’t already tried the idea and screwed it up by being too generous. Britain has a scheme which allows most college grads to stay on for two years and work toward residency (as does in fact the U.S., it’s called “Optional Practical Training” with its own arcane set of regulations, available to almost all foreign students.)

    The UK Graduate Route, which is a post-study visa, allows graduates to stay and work in the UK for up to two years after finalizing their studies. The government estimates that this visa has attracted many migrants to the UK, with them often misusing their benefits. More than 40 percent of people coming to the country for employment purposes in 2023 came from India or Nigeria. Talks for new rules follow plans to ban British universities from accepting certain postgraduates, in an effort to reduce net migration in the UK, which is highly driven by international students.

    So there are lessons learned out there. Meanwhile, let’s not make the same mistake with college grads we made with relatives of earlier immigrants; this time let us separate the baby from the bathwater and get rid of the less valuable part. Instead of handing out green cards willy-nilly with each diploma, subject grads to a merit-based system, with points awarded to skills/majors in demand, accredited schools that rank well nationally, high GPAs, as well as English ability and proven entrepreneurial skills. Trump is close to right in singling out foreign-born college grads. We need only to tweak the system he proposes to pick out the very best America deserves.

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    Copyright © 2020. All rights reserved. The views expressed here are solely those of the author(s) in their private capacity.

  • Recent Comments

    • Rich Bauer said...

      1

      I addressed this bad idea before. How the TRUMP permanent resident giveaway squares with the MAGA AMERICA FIRST and GREAT WHITE REPLACEMENT FEAR must rely upon MAGGOTS having the short term memory of Senile Joe. I can’t tell you how it pains me to actually side with the Great White Replacement folks that this will reduce wages for US citizens in the hi-tech industry. We already have AI on the horizon and the Chinese EV domination..
      Trump got paid by Silicon Valley for this plan. Do you have any plan for the unemployed US citizens?

      07/4/24 9:01 AM | Comment Link

    • Rich Bauer said...

      2

      Peter falls for another Trump Lie

      After compulsive liar Trump became president in 2017, his administration’s policies significantly increased the denial rate for H-1B petitions for initial employment (typically new employees counted against the H-1B annual cap) to 24% in FY 2018 and 21% in FY 2019. Paperwork in the form of Requests for Evidence skyrocketed. In 2020, after a legal settlement forced U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services to cease several of the Trump administration’s practices, the denial rates fell to 2%, close to their historical average.

      In his last year in office, Trump went further by blocking the admission of high-skilled temporary visa holders and employment-based immigrants into the United States. In June 2020, Trump used his authority under section 212(f) of the Immigration and Nationality Act to issue a proclamation that suspended the entry of H-1B, L-1 and other temporary visa holders. A similar proclamation issued in April 2020 prevented the entry of nearly all categories of immigrants, including employment-based. No other president had used the authority in this sweeping manner.

      If elected, Donald Trump is unlikely to pass legislation to award green cards to all foreign graduates of U.S. universities. His longtime immigration adviser, Stephen Miller, and others would almost certainly work to stop such a proposal from becoming law. That is particularly the case since the policy could increase the number of immigrants to America by one million annually. Miller has long toiled to reduce legal immigration, including the entry of high-skilled foreign nationals. By enacting various administrative restrictions, Miller lowered the number of immigrants admitted while Trump was president. He has expressed admiration for the Immigration Act of 1924, which ended most immigration to the United States.

      It should be noted Trump made this weird green card proposal after a meeting with venture capitalists, who no doubt made a nice donation to his campaign.

      Peter proves again, in MAGA, you can fool some people all the time.

      07/4/24 4:05 PM | Comment Link

    • John Poole said...

      3

      Bauer- It seems to me that most Americans are liars. It is only fair time for them to have
      a true representative in the White House. Trump is just not that clever to be the apex
      destroyer of Democracy since Democracy is a phantom and doesn’t really exist except as a concept on old parchment.
      We in the teeny minority expect too much and might be more dangerous to continuance than the smugly ignorant proles.

      07/5/24 4:38 PM | Comment Link

    • John Poole said...

      4

      I know I’m repeating myself but the real culprit if Trump gets a second term is…………………………..Barack Hussein Obama not Joe Biden or Kamala Harris.
      Obama was the guy who considered himself the smartest guy in the room which is a dangerous conceit. He might go down as the
      smoothest con guy who became POTUS of all time knowing America was ripe for “absolution”. A sidebar ( most mixed race people self identify as black and yet few no
      few consider that racist!) Why not just identify as being a mix of the white and black races.

      07/5/24 5:08 PM | Comment Link

    • John Poole said...

      5

      Bauer: Why did you not see the dangerous stubbornness of Biden? He’ll need a super grandiose ceremony to consider relinquishing the crown.

      07/5/24 6:55 PM | Comment Link

    • Rich Bauer said...

      6

      JP,

      Representative government? The poor people don’t have a voice. The rich people own the politicians. That is the way the corrupt political system is set up: pay to play, money talks, bullshit…

      Dark money, PACs speak louder than protesters. The US political system was designed from the start for the rich to keep power out of the hands of the poor. FFS, where else can a lunatic lose by 3,000,000 votes and be elected Presidense?

      We have as much chance as poor Russians who are ruled by a corrupt system run by another lunatic.

      07/5/24 7:38 PM | Comment Link

    • Rich Bauer said...

      7

      JP,

      I know this will come as a shock to you, but I don’t have more contacts in the inside world of Biden than the entire media world. There are less than 10 people who do. This is why the Senile Joe clan didn’t hold press conferences or want any primaries to let the world know Senile Joe wasn’t running the show.

      Now that the whole world knows the guy’s brain is slow, he got to go.

      07/6/24 8:43 AM | Comment Link

    • John Poole said...

      8

      Bauer: I think the Founders were horrified at how stupid most Americans were hence the Electoral College thingee. Being wealthy usually implied educated and refined. I can’t blame the wealthy elitists for wanting to make sure their type would always have their hands on the helm?

      07/6/24 11:43 AM | Comment Link

    • John Poole said...

      9

      Bauer: I too can only speculate about the machinations of the ruling class.
      Obama being reelected after clearly demonstrating only a few months into his first term that he was a fraud showed how little I understood the chronic illogic of prole voters. Obama knowing his chances of being POTUS was tied to rich white guys running all operations apparently begrudgingly acquiesced to their VP choice of Joe Biden. Obama’s pathological narcissistic need to be POTUS mixed with his basic cowardice of challenging the status quo has resulted in a Democratic party now divided and stymied. Obama gave us a stubborn and stupid 2024 candidate. I’ll have to contend with Trump’s warped machinations while Obama parasails with the plutocrats on Martha’s Vineyard.

      07/6/24 9:36 PM | Comment Link

    • Rich Bauer said...

      10

      JP,

      Still under the illusion that Trump, Obama or Senile Joe are running the real show? If Trump poses a threat to the Deep,State, he will pass on in his deep sleep. The Dems and Repub elites knows this too well. JFK didn’t.

      07/7/24 8:23 AM | Comment Link

    • Rich Bauer said...

      11

      The Wizard behind the White House curtain needs to go

      As it increasingly appears Senile Joe is not the one running the show, then the real wizard behind the curtain certainly is not going to give that power away without a fight. Is it Jill, Hunter, Donlin, Klain, or 85-year-old Kaufman? They are desperate to fool the munchkins that Senile Joe isn’t a scarecrow with limited mental capacity or the limited physical ability of the tin man. Courage, Joe. And stop lyin.

      Biden reportedly talks to Donilon several times a day and Klain most days. Donilon was the mastermind of the 2020 election strategy focused on the defence of democracy. Both he and Klain, taking time off from his work as chief legal officer, went to Camp David for debate prep. They all knew and tried to keep it quiet.
      They will tell their flying monkeys at MSNBC to scare the rest of the mediocre media to get the hell in line. Dont believe the polls.
      Right.

      Best to bring the House down on these witches and name Dorothy (read: Kamala) as the WiZ kid.

      07/7/24 10:54 PM | Comment Link

    • John Poole said...

      12

      Bauer- of course it is smoke and mirrors for the populace but the figureheads on occasion do get to make somewhat independent decisions. Historians might be able to clear up the smoke and mirrors eventually but maybe not. There is no such thing as being on the “right side” of history. The “arc of history” trope is a childish fantasy. That is not the way the cosmos operates. Why didn’t Obama choose Hillary Clinton in 2008? The pundits say Biden was necessary to balance the ticket of a young and inexperienced Obama. Surely Obama and his handlers knew that Biden’s approaching pull date would become evident once 2016 rolled around (Obama’s second term was a safe assumption). So here we are with a stubborn and ego driven Biden and most likely a Trump victory and because of decisions made by the Obama syndicate not necessarily the usual castle powers behind the throne.

      07/8/24 9:48 AM | Comment Link

    • Rich Bauer said...

      13

      JP,

      Maybe Trump is onto something: You have to bribe foreigners with green cards to get them to attend US colleges.

      Living down here in Colombia gives one a different perspective of the US. Colombians actually feel sorry for US. They see YouTube videos of rampant crime in ghettos like San Francisco and New York and feel much better about their own country. The US is the second highest source of new immigrants to Colombia. Only Venezuela is higher. That tells them how bad things must be in the US.

      They don’t watch FoxFauxNews. They don’t watch MSNBC either. Not subject to the brainwashing from these “news sources” they see the US is on the downward slide, while China takes its place. Chinese EVs are growing in popularity, as they are not subject to Trump 100% tariffs. Canada is a more preferred destination for Colombians to immigrate.

      Having endured a 50year conflict, Colombians are very aware the US is not immune to its own uncivil conflict. I tell my Colombian relatives not to worry. I tell them most Americans are bullshitters who talk a good game but never want to risk their own lives. We pay our unemployed and immigrants to fight our wars for US.

      So while Peter tries to sell foreigners the US green card is a great deal to attract the best and brightest, if they are smart they will realize in 10 years the green card won’t be worth the paper it is printed on.

      07/8/24 11:59 AM | Comment Link

    • Rich Bauer said...

      14

      Right on time the Flying Monkeys of MSNBC, the political whores they are, fell in line with the Biden talking points that Old Senile Joe must not go. These fuckers did the same as they were told to support the war criminals who got US into the Illegal Iraq War. Anyone who didn’t, I am looking at you Phil Donohue, were not going to be around for long. So what war are they preparing US for now, hmmmm?

      Yes, there is Balance in the fake media universe. But the future of this dumbass country hangs in the balance. In the Biden Cult you either hang together or it will hang you separately.

      07/9/24 11:32 AM | Comment Link

    • Rich Bauer said...

      15

      It is a pathetic state of affairs when Jeff Dunham’s Walter would do better than Senile Joe in the next debate. Speaking of dead wood in political reporting, MSNBC is leading the race in having its strings pulled by the Biden Cult. Coming up the rear are the dead wood at Daily Kos, Meidass, and several other forgettable mentions that are defending Senile Joe from the elites (if you consider elites the 74% of voters). It is certainly a learning experience these “news outlets” are stealing the TrumpFoxFake News playbook.

      07/9/24 11:04 PM | Comment Link

    • Rich Bauer said...

      16

      Joe: Jill, I think it is time. Maybe we should let Kamala…

      Jill: The cleaning lady? No way am I going to allow that.

      07/10/24 9:01 AM | Comment Link

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