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US5 things you should know about Trump's latest legal immigration crackdown

00:55  14 august  2019
00:55  14 august  2019 Source:   abcnews.go.com

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Trump ’ s latest crackdown on legal immigration looks like a major win for Miller, the leading immigration opponent in the White House and the architect of most administration policy on the issue. The youthful yet cadaverous adviser has long sought to redefine federal immigration rules as

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5 things you should know about Trump's latest legal immigration crackdown© Evan Vucci/AP Acting Director of United States Citizenship and Immigration Services Ken Cuccinelli speaks during a briefing at the White House, Aug. 12, 2019, in Washington.

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The new rule penalizes anyone who qualifies for assistance, even if they don't use it.

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Take the Trump administration’ s stance on chain migration, a.k.a. family-based immigration . “ You allow one person in, and that one person brings in ten or And now, they have a problem with legal immigrants coming in. I know they say they’re not coming for us if we’re already here legally , but the

Immigration authorities will assess whether an immigrant might qualify for public assistance programs in the future. The administration has expanded the definition of those public benefit programs to include Medicaid and food stamps.

Officials with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services evaluate applicants based on a "totality of circumstances," weighing factors like age, health and employment history.

Certain public benefits are exempt from the review process. If an applicant has needed emergency medical assistance, disaster relief or was enrolled in a discounted school lunch program, it will not count against them.

Who does the rule apply to?

USCIS says the rule won't apply to people who currently hold a green card or who are looking to renew their green cards. The rule also carves out exemptions for pregnant women, children, refugees, asylum seekers and certain members of the military.

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Trump ’ s latest crackdown on legal immigration looks like a major win for Miller, the leading immigration The youthful yet cadaverous adviser has long sought to redefine federal immigration rules as In a recent tweet, Coulter suggested Trump should be criminally charged for employing

Despite his hard-line rhetoric on immigration , Trump has long spoken favorably about young undocumented immigrants who The latest proposal is an indication that the Trump administration wants to step up its hard-line NASA head: 'I'm not saying there' s life on Mars, but we should find out'.

Otherwise, the rule applies to people looking to come into the U.S. legally, as well as people who have already entered the country legally but are applying to become permanent residents.

The government says that on average about 544,000 people seek green cards each year, and of that amount, about 382,000 are probably going to have to fill out a new special form, called a "declaration of self-sufficiency."

5 things you should know about Trump's latest legal immigration crackdown© Joseph Prezioso/AFP/Getty Images, FILE In this Januaruy 22, 2019, file photo, newly sworn-in U.S. citizens celebrate and wave US flags during a naturalization ceremony where 633 immigrants became US citizens,at the Lowell Auditorium, in Lowell, Massachusetts.

People who are in the country legally will be impacted too.

The announced change rattled immigrant communities and could impact U.S. citizen children if parents decide not to use public services out of fear their green card application will be denied.

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Researchers at the University of California San Diego found immigrants are less likely to seek out necessary medical care after being told about the public charge rule.

With the addition of food stamps as a disqualifying factor on applications, advocates worry about disadvantaged immigrants not having access to basic food.

While people in the country illegally cannot enroll in government programs like food stamps, many families with U.S. citizen children could qualify.

(MORE: Food banks see impact of Trump's immigration policies)

The data on how many people opted not to access benefits because of fear of their immigration status is limited. But a nonpartisan policy group Children's HealthWatch found last fall that SNAP enrollment was already down 10% among immigrant families last year.

Experts say the change complicates and strains an already overburdened immigration process.

Green card applicants will be faced with new paperwork and additional legal hurdles to prove they won't need U.S. public services. USCIS officials reviewing applications will also require additional training to calculate those positive and negative traits.

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"It's going to really slow things down," said Jeffrey Gorsky, a senior immigration attorney at Berry Appleman & Leiden and former chief legal adviser for visas at the U.S. State Department.

Referencing the Trump administration's attempt to institute a similar policy through the state department, Gorsky said the latest move is another attempt to block immigrants without closing the border.

"They've slowed things down and I think that's been deliberate," he said.

5 things you should know about Trump's latest legal immigration crackdown© Rogelio V. Solis/AP Children of mainly Latino immigrant parents hold signs in support of them and those who were picked up during an immigration raid at a food processing plant, during a protest march to the Madison County Courthouse in Canton, Miss., Aug. 11, 2019.

(MORE: Trump administration to deny more visa applicants who may use public assistance)

The Trump administration will face legal challenges -- again.

Officials in California are expected to sue the administration over the rule shift, saying it wrongfully disqualifies immigrants who meet the legal requirements for citizenship.

"This vile rule is the Trump Administration's latest attack on families and lower income communities of color," California Attorney General Xavier Becerra said in a statement. "We will not stand idly by while this Administration targets programs that children and families across our state rely upon."

Congressional Democrats have introduced legislation to block funding to the Department of Homeland Security over the new rule.

Multiple advocacy groups have also promised to take the administration to court, citing both the impact on immigrant communities and what they call a rushed process for implementing the regulation.

"This policy denies a permanent, secure future in this country to anyone who isn't white and wealthy," said Marielena Hincapié, executive director of the National Immigration Law Center.

Much of the administration's immigration agenda has ended up in court. For example, lawsuits have stalled progress on Trump's border wall and created hurdles for the new policy to make asylum seekers wait in Mexico.

ABC's Stephanie Ebbs and Sophie Tatum contributed to this report.

Mexico 'evaluating' legal action against migrant minor detention rule.
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