President Donald Trump has said he expects to sign an executive order Wednesday that will suspend immigration — mostly impacting Green Cards — for the next 60 days to ensure Americans hits by record layoffs caused by the coronavirus outbreak get a first shot at all available jobs.
Exemptions will be over cases on humanitarian ground and short-term work, which could include, though he did not specify, H-1B visas, more than 70% of which have tended to go to Indians hired from US universities or from India by US companies and US subsidiaries of Indian companies.
The president said he will review economic conditions at the end of the 60-day period to determine if he wants to extend the suspension or terminate it.
Nearly 22 million Americans have applied for unemployment benefits over the last four weeks and many more layoffs are feared as the economy teeters on the edge of the worst slowdown in US history, a situation compared by many economists to the Great Depression of 1929.
As Hindustan Times reported earlier on Trump’s tweet about the upcoming executive order, more than 1 million new immigrants are admitted to the United States every year. India sent the most in 2017 with 126,000 people, according to a Pew study. It was followed by Mexico (124,000), China (121,000) and Cuba (41,000). Overall, people from Mexico comprise the largest group of foreign-born US national in 2018 at 25%, followed by India and China, with 6% each, according to the same report