No, Trump isn’t being impeached. However, Trump is advocating a policy that is technically already law. Trump wants to keep immigrants from coming to America and signing up for welfare.
On Wednesday, at a political rally in Iowa, President Trump said “those seeking admission into our country must be able to support themselves financially and should not use welfare for a period of at least five years.”
The law that was passed under Bill Clinton’s administration is titled The Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996. In fact, when the bill was up for passage, former President Clinton said, “(the bill) gives us a chance we haven’t had before to break the cycle of dependency that has existed for millions and millions of our fellow citizens, exiling them from the world of work. It gives structure, meaning and dignity to most of our lives.”
So, if the law already exists, why did it seem like Trump is creating new legislation?
According to a White House spokesperson, the current law is “full of holes.” Michael Short added, “The president is referring to policies he laid out both during his joint address to Congress and in his budget that promote a merit-based approach to immigration that requires self-sufficiency.”
Let’s look at the statistics: According to the Center for Immigration Studies, it is estimated that 49 percent of immigrant households use one or more welfare programs as of 2012. Compare that to 30 percent of American-born households that are on welfare program rolls. Immigrants on Medicaid stand at 39 percent; cash programs – 14 percent; food programs – 36 percent. Compared to American-born welfare recipients, immigrants represent a significant number of those on welfare. (Cis.org/Welfare-Use-Legal-Illegal-Immigrant-Households)
The Center for Immigration Studies also reports that even with restrictions on new immigrants and welfare programs, immigrants still access the program at high rates. This occurs because restrictions only apply to a certain demographic of immigrants at any one time; there are numerous exceptions to the law; unfortunately, some restrictions aren’t even enforced.
Maybe those are the “holes” Michael Short was referring to.
While it is always good to help people in need, there has to be a balance. There are homeless veterans that never receive any government help. There are American-born children whose families need assistance also.
There is a saying, “Give a man a fish and he eats for a day.” This could apply to many instances when welfare for immigrants comes to mind. There has to be a happy medium to giving assistance to immigrants.
And I think Donald Trump will find it.