Donald Trump promises automatic green cards for foreign graduates

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on Jun 22, 2024
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  • Trump promises automatic green cards for foreign graduates to retain top talent in the US.
  • This marks a departure from Trump's previous hardline immigration stance.
  • Aimed at appealing to the business community and addressing economic needs.

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After his dramatic change of heart on cryptocurrency, former US President Donald Trump has announced a shift in his stance on immigration.

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Trump, who has been known for his hardline immigration policies, recently promised to grant automatic green cards to foreign students who graduate from US colleges.

This move is aimed at preventing these graduates from returning to their home countries, such as India and China, where many go on to become multibillionaires.

A new approach to immigration

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Trump’s departure from his previous anti-immigrant rhetoric comes as the 2024 presidential election looms, with immigration and deportation of illegal immigrants being key issues for voters.

Historically, Trump has supported a merit-based legal immigration system, and his latest proposal seems to align with that philosophy.

During a recent appearance on the “All-In” podcast, hosted by venture capitalists Chamath Palihapitiya, Jason Calacanis, David Sacks, and David Friedberg, Trump elaborated on his new stance. Trump said:

What I want to do and what I will do is — you graduate from a college, I think you should get a Green Card automatically as part of your diploma, a Green Card to be able to stay in this country. And that includes junior colleges too.

The need for talent retention

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Trump highlighted the importance of retaining top talent in the US, lamenting the loss of bright minds to other countries.

He pointed out that many graduates from prestigious institutions like Harvard and MIT are forced to leave the US due to immigration policies, only to establish successful companies elsewhere.

It’s so sad when we lose people from Harvard, MIT, from the greatest schools. And what I wanted to do, and I would have done this, but then we had to solve the COVID problem because that came in and, you know, sort of dominated for a little while.

This policy shift is particularly significant given the latest annual Open Doors report by the Institute of International Education, which states that more than a million international students from over 210 places of origin are studying at US higher education institutions during the 2022-23 academic year.

China and India are the top two countries sending students to the US, with 289,526 and 268,923 students, respectively.

Addressing past immigration policies

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Trump’s new proposal stands in stark contrast to the immigration policy he adopted while in office.

During his presidency, Trump sought to reform the nation’s immigration system by scaling back family-based immigration and prioritizing wealthy immigrants with valuable work skills or higher education.

His administration also implemented restrictions on green cards, visa programs, refugee resettlement, and other forms of legal immigration.

One of Trump’s most controversial actions was signing an executive order that banned travelers from seven predominantly Muslim countries.

He also embraced a proposal to cut legal immigration by half and frequently criticized the H-1B visa program, which is favoured by tech companies to hire foreign skilled workers.

A strategic move

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Trump’s latest comments appear to be a direct overture to wealthy business leaders and potential donors.

His proposal to grant automatic green cards to foreign graduates is aimed at appealing to the business community, which relies heavily on skilled workers from abroad.

Trump reiterated his support for foreign students in STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) fields, stating that anyone who graduates from a US college should be able to stay in the country.

We force the brilliant people, the people that graduate from college, the people that are number one in their class from the best colleges, you have to be able to recruit these people and keep the people.

Moving forward

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As the US prepares for the upcoming presidential election, Trump’s shift in immigration policy marks a notable change in his approach.

By focusing on retaining top talent and addressing the needs of the business community, Trump aims to bolster his support among voters and key stakeholders.

According to the NPR/PBS News/Marist poll, both Trump and President Joe Biden are currently tied with 49% support among registered voters.

With the first campaign debate scheduled for June 27 and the second on September 10, Trump’s new immigration stance will likely be a significant topic of discussion.

In conclusion, Trump’s promise to grant automatic green cards to foreign graduates represents a strategic move to appeal to the business community and address the needs of the US economy.

As the election approaches, it remains to be seen how this shift in policy will impact his campaign and the broader political landscape.

Donald Trump USA USD Political