Trump's New Rule Makes Immigrants Have To Choose Between A Green Card Or Public Services

The final rule is scheduled to be officially be published on Wednesday.

Photo Credit: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

| August 12 2019,

6:10 pm

Acting Director of the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, Ken Cuccinelli, announced changes to what is known as the public charge rule. The changes would mostly impact low-income immigrants as it denies green cards from immigrants who have received public assistance in the past, or deemed likely to in the future.


The benefits covered by the regulation include food stamps, welfare, Medicaid, and housing assistance, according to Politico. At a news conference Monday, Cuccinelli supported these proposed changes, saying it would push immigrant populations toward self-sufficiency.

“We want to see people coming to this country who are self-sufficient,” Cuccinelli said. “That’s a core principle of the American dream. It’s deeply embedded in our history, and particularly our history related to legal immigration.”

An Associated Press analysis of census data, done last October, showed low-income immigrants — who are not yet citizens —use the aforementioned programs less than comparable low-income native-born adults. Many immigrants are ineligible for such programs due to their immigration status. The statistics left immigration advocates seeing different reasoning behind the proposed rule change.

"This latest racially-motivated policy will have a dire humanitarian impact, forcing some families to forego critical life-saving health care and nutrition," said National Immigration Law Center's Executive Director Marielena Hincapié; who also announced a lawsuit Monday morning. 

Even with the lawsuit calling the action unnecessary Cuccinelli called on Congress for further action, moving the administration aims on asylum seekers, who would not be affected by the proposal.

"Asylum is a major subject of focus for us at my agency,  and with the crisis at the border, we've been all but begging congress to take action to close loopholes — some of them the same as the Obama administration — [though] that has not happened," Cuccinelli said  "So in this narrow area of our responsibility, we're relying on congressional direction and we've, as I said, I think put meat on the bones here, I think, today."

The final rule is scheduled to be officially be published on Wednesday and would go into effect in mid-October, according to CBS News