Office of the Press Secretary


February 8, 2018



"It is time to create a merit-based immigration system that makes sense for a modern economy selecting new arrivals based on their ability to support themselves financially and to make positive contributions to U.S society President Donald J. Trump


*LOW-SKILLED LABOR: The United States has seen an inflow of low-skilled labor through both our legal immigration system and illegal aliens entering our country through its porous borders.


Our immigration systems prioritization of family relations over merit, education level, or skill has allowed a wave of low-skilled labor into our country.


o More than two-thirds of the legal immigrant admissions into the United States each year are admitted based on family relations rather than merit or skill.

The United States grants up to 50,000 visas each year through the visa lottery program, which has only a few educational and skill requirements.

Lapses in our border security contribute to the inflow of low-skilled labor into the United States.


o Illegal aliens in the United States often have low educational attainment levels and are employed in low-skill jobs.

As of 2015, a majority of all immigrants in the United States over the age of 25, here legally or illegally, had a high school education or less.

o 29 percent of U.S. immigrants over the age of 25 had received less than a high school education.


For years, low-skilled immigration into the U.S. has put downward pressure on wages at the expense of vulnerable American workers.

o Real hourly wages for Americans with a high school education or less are lower than in 1979.

*A STRAIN ON PUBLIC RESOURCES: The influx of low-skilled labor into the U.S. has put a strain on public resources and burdened American taxpayers.



The rate of low-skilled immigration into the United States serves as a driver of the high usage of welfare programs among immigrant-headed households.

o A majority, 51 percent, of immigrant-headed households uses at least one welfare program.


The relatively high use of welfare programs by immigrant-headed households puts a strain on programs designed to help the most vulnerable Americans.

*IMMIGRATION REFORM TO BENEFIT THE AMERICAN ECONOMY: President Trump has proposed an immigration framework that would stem the tide of low-skilled immigration into our country, benefiting American workers and the economy.*

President Trumps immigration framework lays out the steps we must take to finally secure our borders. **


The Presidents framework would curb the flow of low-skilled workers into the U.S. by ending extended-family chain migration, while still protecting the nuclear family. **

President Trumps framework would end the visa lottery program and reallocate some of the visas to help reduce backlog of high-skilled, employment-based immigrant cases.


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