After New York attack, Trump pitches for 'merit-based' US visa system

Posted Noviembre 02, 2017

It took less than 24 hours after yesterday's terrorist attack in New York for the finger-pointing to begin.

"Diversity lottery. Sounds nice".

"This lottery was created for Irish and Italians by Irish and Italian Americans, but after a while the beneficiaries lost interest in it", said Anna O. Law, Herbert Kurz Chair of Constitutional Rights at CUNY Brooklyn College.

Schumer shot back from the floor of the Senate, also wrapping his policy argument in a personal attack that smacked of blame. I don't know all of the details of the proposed legislation, and they may have had good reasons.

Media captionAm I American yet? David Perdue, R-Ga., the co-author of an immigration bill that would end the diversity lottery program.


White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said later that Trump was "expressing his frustration" with the criminal justice system, not suggesting a wholesale overhaul of the way domestic terror suspects are treated.

The State Department's diversity green card lottery makes up a small proportion of the roughly one million green cards issued by the US per year.

Following this logic, one can only assume that the "diversity lottery" Trump wants to get rid of, and the mix of population it creates, is not considered a merit. Trump said he instead wants "merit based" immigration.

Schumer and the president have clashed frequently throughout Trump's first months in office, with the president pinning multiple nicknames on the Senate minority leader, including "head clown" and "cryin' Chuck Schumer", in response to criticism from the New York senator. In the most recent edition, it instructs followers to "gather as much information about your target as possible".

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio agreed, telling CNN's "New Day" that "the last thing the president or anyone else should do is politicize this tragedy".


The 1990 programme awards US permanent resident visas to around 50 000 applicants from around the world each year, opening the door as well for members of their broader families to follow them, so-called chain migration.

Officials said the attacker is an immigrant from Uzbekistan.

Trump has endorsed the bill, saying it would promote immigration of high-skilled workers and reduce overall immigration numbers to limit low-skilled and unskilled labor entering the United States.

Sub-Saharan immigrants are more likely than any other US migrant to have entered through the lottery programme, according to a study by Pew Research Center.

Mr Trump's efforts to block immigrants from several Muslim-majority countries have been tied up in federal courts.


The president also declared that he is already in the process of terminating the State Department's diversity-oriented visa lottery program, which granted Saipov entry into the United States in 2010.