The role of immigration during the presidential elections
The most recent presidential elections of the US took place on November 3, 2020. Despite the fact that the global Coronavirus pandemic, the sanitary and economic crisis and the health system were the main issue and received constant attention from the two strongest candidates, there were also other quite relevant and controversial issues among the American population, such as immigration.
The US is the destination for thousands of immigrants annually, who yearn to build a promising future for their beloved ones, study, gain work experience, and find economic stability. The reason why it is a controversial issue is because there is a part of the population that supports immigration and considers that foreigners are essential to the economy, but there is another part of the population that disapproves of immigration and relates it to crime and the local unemployment rate.
Speaking specifically about the elections, both current President Donald Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden have a diametrically opposite stance when it comes to immigration and proposed different strategies to improve the immigration system depending on what they consider appropriate and correct.
On the one hand, President Trump (Republican political party) refers to immigration with a negative connotation, stating that it is a burden on the economy and taxpayers and, therefore, should be reduced and measured. On the other hand, Joe Biden (Democratic political party) refers to immigration with a positive connotation, stating that it is a benefit and a strength for the US.
American citizens elected Democratic nominee Joe Biden as the nation’s next leader, who will take office on January 20, 2021, which means that the immigration system will most likely change drastically over the next four years.
Joe Biden proposed an immigration reform
During the elections, President Trump did not use immigration as an essential part of his political campaign as in 2016. The Republican candidate mentioned known aspects of his immigration ideals such as the border wall that separates the US from Mexico, his opinion regarding illegal immigration and deportations.
However, for the Democratic candidate, immigration was an essential issue during his political campaign. Joe Biden promised:
- Initially, to reverse Trump’s restrictive policies, which hinder immigration processes, affect the most vulnerable immigrant communities, and decrease opportunities for highly skilled foreign workers.
- To halt deportations during his first 100 days in office to establish new parameters and guidelines regarding deportation proceedings and immigration enforcement within the US.
- Introduce an immigration bill during his first days in office in order to restructure, reform, and improve the immigration system and protect vulnerable communities since, in the opinion of the president-elect, the US is an immigrant country.
In fact, on Friday, January 8, 2021, during a question-and-answer session in Delaware, the president-elect stated: “I will introduce an immigration bill immediately and have it sent to the appropriate committees to begin movement.”
Adding to that, it is important to clarify that, both the president-elect and his cabinet, have stated that reversing Trump’s policies could take at least six months because if current restrictions are lifted suddenly and without adequate precaution, it could unleash an immigration and social crisis within the US.
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