Trump Cites Terror Attack in Call for Immigration Overhaul

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President Trump said Monday’s attempted New York City terrorist attack is more evidence that the U.S. immigration system needs a total overhaul to end immigration based on family relationships, the Wall Street Journal reports. The suspect, Akayed Ullah, “entered our country through extended-family chain migration, which is incompatible with national security,” Trump said. Ullah emigrated to the U.S. in 2011 from Bangladesh. He received a visa for relatives of U.S. citizens and is a legal permanent resident. The issue of “chain migration” has taken on currency among Republicans, with many suggesting that ending the practice should be coupled with legalization for so-called Dreamers, who were brought to the U.S. as children and are living here illegally.

The Trump administration has made cracking down on immigration—both legal and illegal—a priority. Officials argue that vetting procedures for foreigners trying to come to the U.S. haven’t been stringent enough in the past. Foreigners asking to move to the U.S. are subject to extensive vetting, including background checks with law enforcement and the intelligence community. People with criminal histories are generally not allowed into the U.S., even if they are sponsored by a relative. Foreigners being sponsored by their U.S citizen relatives also must provide evidence of their relationship, affidavits of support from their American relatives, and sit for an interview with U.S. State Department officials. Family visas like the one Ullah used are subject to a cap of 226,000 a year.

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