By Makayla Grijalva
WASHINGTON – House Democrats have proposed a bill aimed to make it easier to reunite families separated by immigration.
“Family immigration works for … and if anything, we need to fix the system, not weaken it,” Rep. Judy Chu (D-Calif.), the sponsor of the legislation, said Tuesday at a news conference in front of the Capitol.
The Reuniting Families Act aims to reduce backlogs in the family immigration visa system and legally bring immigrant families together in the United States in a timely matter.
The bill contradicts the four-pillar plan President Donald Trump outlined in his State of the Union Address. Trump called for an end to “chain migration,” legally called family reunification, in the fourth pillar of his plan.
“He is not trying to fix our immigration system; instead he is trying to make America white again,” Chu said.
Trump outlined a possible merit-based immigration system, as opposed to one driven by family reunification or chain migration.
“We ought to look at immigration as a way for us to attract the best and brightest, the people who have skills … things to offer to their new country,” Sen. John Cornyn (R- Texas) said in general session Tuesday.
Rep. Lucille Roybal-Allard (D-Calif.) said the proposed immigration system is “misguided” and “a direct attack on the importance of the family unit.”
The president continually reiterates his concentration on immigration reform, including a fully secured southern border and a path to citizenship for Dreamers in addition to ending chain migration.