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What Does The Raise Act Entail For Immigrants In America

The RAISE Act aims for a skills-based U.S. immigration system. Co-sponsored by Senators Cotton and Perdue, it seeks to reduce annual green cards by half over a decade.

Elektra B. Yao

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The RAISE act is a bill that focuses on a skills based immigration system in America. RAISE stands for Reforming America’s Immigration for Strong Employment. The two republican politicians that co-sponsored were Arkansas Senator Tom Cotton and Georgia Senator David Perdue. This bill’s goal is to cut the percentage of legal immigration in the United States by 50% each year over the next 10 years by reducing the number of green cards issued.

Hopefully, the bill will face opposition in congress from Democrats and some Republicans as well. This act will greatly impact the United States’ immigration system, which currently gives green cards to more than a million people a year.

This bill would attempt to cut this number in half to become about 500,000 people a year.

Green cards can become points based

This bill advocates for employment based green cards specifically to become points based. This point system for employment based immigration will drastically alter immigration in America. Currently, individuals from outside the United States can apply in three categories, with top priority given to professionals with extraordinary ability, in science, athletics, multi managers or outstanding researchers.

Under this bill employment based green cards will be points based, with consideration given to age, education level, and future salary.

Applicants will need a minimum of 30 points.

For educational qualifications, applicants can acquire 13 points if he or she have attained a U.S. doctorate and 1 point for a U.S. or foreign High School diploma. For age, individuals over 50 years of age don’t get any points. Additionally, the immigrant’s mastery of the English language is judged through an assessment.

Future salary is given up to 13 points for a job that pays “300% of the median for the state” where they reside. Investments in a U.S. business up to $1.8 million individuals can earn up to 12 points. Lastly, for achievements and awards won, the applicant can get up to 25 points for a Nobel prize, or 15 points for an Olympic medal.

The RAISE Act would remove the preference of prioritizing extended family for green cards. Preference would only go to spouses or children under 18 years old. The diversity visa program would be cut, which is a green card lottery that millions of people apply to every year. The number of refugees allowed would also be cut in half.

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