By Jon Dougherty
(NationalSentinel) As expected, four states led by Left-wing Democrats have filed suit against the Trump administration’s new rule tightening restrictions on green card applicants who are receiving welfare and other public taxpayer-supported benefits.
Led by California, four states filed suit against what is known as the “Public Charge” rule, which has actually been established law for decades. The statute says that the government has the authority to deny legal residency to anyone temporarily in the country legally if they are receiving any welfare, public housing, or public health benefits.
The only ‘change’ to the rule, essentially, was the Trump administration’s Aug. 12 announcement that it would actually begin enforcing all provisions of the law.
The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will begin applying the new rule on any green card applications filed after Oct. 15, barring any action from a federal court, such as staying the order.
But that’s likely, given that Democrat-run states who regularly file lawsuits against the Trump administration for any immigration-related actions tend to court-shop and have been successful in the early rounds of litigation finding judges who agree with them, regardless of what the law actually says.
“This is simply unacceptable,” said Attorney General Becerra of California in a press release. “In California we know that welcoming and investing in all communities makes our entire nation stronger.”
He went on to complain that he fears “hardworking eligible immigrants” will become fearful of coming forward to apply for necessary and allegedly necessary public assistance.
Acting Director of USCIS Ken Cuccinelli told the Washington Times that the rule will not automatically disqualify applicants. A process is involved, but welfare will be a “highly weighted factor.”
“There isn’t a formula,” he told the Times. “It is intended to be a case-by-case determination.”
The lawsuit claims the new rule violates the Fifth Amendment guarantee of equal protection because it “disproportionately” blocks admission of “non-white, non-European immigrants” from various countries.
Cuccinelli, however, said the administration was merely enforcing a law that had long been on the books but had been selectively enforced for years.
“The principle driving it is an old American value, and that’s self-sufficiency,” he told Fox News. “It’s core principle—the American Dream itself—and it’s one of the things that distinguishes us, and it’s central to the legal history in the U.S. back into the 1800s.”
Attorney Generals from Washington, Maine, Oregon, and Pennsylvania have joined Becerra in filing the lawsuit.
In a recent study, the Center for Immigration Studies found that over half of immigrants in the U.S. utilize some form of taxpayer-funded welfare.
“In 2014, 63 percent of households headed by a non-citizen reported that they used at least one welfare program, compared to 35 percent of native-headed households,” stated the center.
Regarding food services and Medicaid, non-citizen households use more than 25 percent more than native families.
Cuccinelli said that enforcing the rule is meant to benefit both the American taxpayer and immigrants themselves.
“It will also have the long-term effect of protecting taxpayers by enduring people who are immigrating to this country don’t become public burdens, that they can stand on their own feet, as immigrants in years past have done,” he told Fox News.
“It’s not only a recipe for their success but for America’s success growing out of our immigration system.”
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