Trump’s immigration ban: Practical impact far less dramatic than political impact

Trump’s immigration ban: Practical impact far less dramatic than political impact

This evening President Trump signed a proclamation temporarily suspending some immigration into the United States.

Rebecca Bernhard, a partner at the international law firm Dorsey & Whitney in both its immigration and labor and employment practices.

Having read the proclamation of the executive order, Bernhard says: “This is another example of where the original Tweet and subsequent press statements differ from the practical effects of the actual order. This current order suspends entry of foreign nationals who are not in this country, and who do not already hold a green card. There are exceptions so that certain foreign nationals on temporary work visas MAY enter.

“The executive order associated with the Trump tweet to end immigration appears to be a very limited action that could likely survive US Supreme Court scrutiny (particularly the current Court).

“It appears to be issued as kind of a political document for the Presidential campaign as a way to demonstrate the President’s solidarity with US citizens laid off during the COVID 19 crisis – the EO specifically calls out blacks and Latinos as being hurt by unemployment.

“It appears to only apply to immigrant (permanent residence) visas issued abroad and not necessarily adjustment of status applications which are the main way employment-based immigrants actually get their green card.

“There are a number of reasonable exemptions including health care and agricultural workers on nonimmigrant (temporary) work visas.

“The most significant thing in the EO is the language suggesting the Secretary of Homeland Security and the Secretary of Labor will be working on additional EOs on the same topic, with the one from DOL being the most ominous as there is a lot of discretion for DOL to blow up the PERM process.

“Recall that even before this order, most US consulates outside the US closed, and the Dept. of State is not issuing entry visas in those closed consulates. And there were already travel/entry bans in place for foreign nationals who had been to China, Iran, EU, UK and Ireland within 14 days of the date seeking entry. So the practical impact feels far less dramatic than the political impact.”

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