During a time of economic uncertainty and spikes of new Covid-19 cases blanketing the concerns of Americans this election season, a topic that was gravitational in Trump’s 2016
victory has remained unseen. From President Trump’s famous escalator ride in Trump Tower, immigration has been a key issue to his political campaign and administration. Over the past several years, the President has taken aggressive actions to severely limit legal immigration into the United States. Under the Covid-19 pandemic, immigration restrictions have been intensified, restricting green card applicants, severely limiting asylum claims, and in effect closing down the border. These policies have been pushed for by the president’s senior advisers on immigration including anti-immigration advocate, Stephen Miller. If the President is reelected, the potential impact on immigration will be tremendous and have lasting impacts for generations.
On the campaign trail and during both presidential debates little focus has been placed on the current state of immigration. The subject of immigration has been clouded by major issues like the supreme court confirmation hearings, healthcare, the economy, and the Covid-19 pandemic. Even amongst these critical issues, immigration will still be on the ballot this election. Based on the Supreme Court’s docket, controversial immigration policies will be decided under the next presidential term. The Supreme Court docket includes the administration’s effort to exclude undocumented immigrants from the 2020 census, which will be essential in the apportionment of congressional districts. The justices also agreed to hear cases on the controversial asylum policy that would require asylum seekers to “remain in Mexico” while awaiting their court appearance and the diversion of military funding toward the southern border wall and its constitutionality.
These issues will be central in the focus of immigration for decades to come. Under the next presidency, immigrants’ fate will either be decided by the next president.
The decision of these crucial cases hinges on the 2020 election outcome. Americans’ right to vote in free and fair elections will ultimately seal the fate of two of the policies while severely limiting one of them. After the confirmation of President Trump’s third Supreme Court justice, the fate of immigration will lie in the hands of a 6-3 conservative court if Trump is reelected. You need to look no further than additional cases that may reach the supreme court including the Public charge rule that in effect is an immigration wealth test. The Public charge rule excludes green card applicants from the United States if they qualify for government assistance programs. Future attacks by the Trump administration on the Obama era Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals will also be decided under the new 6-3 Supreme Court.
The reelection of the President will result in the continued assault on the constitutional rights that protect millions of immigrants. Such policies that will lie before the Supreme Court are “the early stages of a far-right attack on the 14th Amendment,” said Ali Noorani, president and CEO of the National Immigration Forum. “There are so many protections to American society that are the result of the 14th Amendment,” Noorani said. “We see this, particularly with the census case, as a way for the Trump administration and others on the far right to make the case to the public that immigrants do not count.” If elected, Joe Biden will have the opportunity to swiftly end the policies before the cases are decided in front of the Supreme Court this February. The census case will ultimately be decided before the inauguration of the next president.
Immigrating to the United States? Secure the representation you deserve with a fair and dedicated immigration attorney who has represented countless immigrants. Over the past two decades, Attorney James A. Welcome has fought on behalf of those whose rights have been suppressed while taking all actions possible to secure favorable results. Contact an experienced immigration attorney today to ensure justice is upheld and your rights remain a priority.