On Tuesday, President Biden will issue three executive orders dealing with illegal immigrants, and among the directives is a call to streamline the naturalization process for millions of immigrants.
One of the orders directs the incoming Secretary of Homeland Security to create a task force to reunite families that have been separated at the Southern border of the United States. Two orders call for a “wholesale review” of the Trump administration’s immigration policies that “limited asylum, stopped funding to foreign countries, made it more difficult to get green cards or be naturalized, and slowed down legal immigration into the United States,” as The New York Times reported.
NBC News notes that the third executive action directs the State Department, Justice Department and Department of Homeland Security to review Trump-era guidelines and policies to see if they align with Biden’s goal to promote “integration and inclusion” in its immigration policies, including those related to the naturalization process.
The Biden-Harris campaign website attacked former President Trump’s immigration policies. “Trump has waged an unrelenting assault on our values and our history as a nation of immigrants. It’s wrong, and it stops when Joe Biden is elected president,” the campaign site read.
“As Vice President, Biden championed the creation and expansion of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program; the Deferred Action for Parents of Americans (DAPA) program; the Central American Minors program, which allowed parents with legal status in the U.S. to apply to bring their children up from Central America to live with them; and the creation of a White House task force to support new Americans and help them integrate into their new homes and communities,” the Biden-Harris campaign said.
The website also outlined Biden’s intent to “Protect Dreamers and their families”:
The Obama-Biden Administration created DACA in 2012 to protect “Dreamers,” undocumented immigrants who were brought to the U.S. as children, obeyed the law once here, and stayed in school or enlisted in the military. DACA provided young people who passed a background check and application process with temporary work permits and protection from deportation. The Trump Administration made the cruel and counterproductive decision to terminate DACA, throwing into turmoil the lives of millions of Dreamers. Dreamers and their parents should have a roadmap to citizenship through legislative immigration reform.
But in the meantime, Biden will remove the uncertainty for Dreamers by reinstating the DACA program, and he will explore all legal options to protect their families from inhumane separation. Biden will also ensure Dreamers are eligible for federal student aid (loans, Pell grants) and are included in his proposals to provide access to community college without debt and invest in HBCU/Hispanic Serving Institution/Minority Serving Institutions, which will help Dreamers contribute even more to our economy.…
Among Biden’s immigration goals is to “restore and defend the naturalization process for green card holders”:
A Biden Administration will streamline and improve the naturalization process to make it more accessible to qualified green card holders. The Trump Administration has made it far too difficult for qualifying green card holders to obtain citizenship. Quite simply, this is wrong. Biden will restore faith in the citizenship process by removing roadblocks to naturalization and obtaining the right to vote, addressing the application backlog by prioritizing the adjudication workstream and ensuring applications are processed quickly, and rejecting the imposition of unreasonable fees.
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