- More effective methods of tracking visa's that have, or are about to expire.
- Simplified process of renewing or extending visa's.
- Finishing the border wall.
- Simplifing and expediting the process of applying for legal immigration.
- Creating a transparent and readily available list of what qualifications we are looking for in legal immigration applications.
- Restricting the natural born citizenship clause to apply only to those children born to at least one U.S. citizen or two legal immigrants.
- Illegal Immigration and Border Security
There are two facets of illegal immigration, visa overstays and illegal border crossings. These are two separate problems that will require two separate solutions.
First is the problem of visa overstays.
The table below came from an article by Robert Warren called US Undocumented Population Continued to Fall from 2016 to 2017, and Visa Overstays Significantly Exceeded Illegal Crossings for the Seventh Consecutive Year, from the Center for Migration Studies website cmsny.org. shows how in 2016, well over half of the undocumented arrivals into the United States were from visa overstays. So, just like we need to reduce the number of illegal border crossings, which the article calls entered without inspection, we also need to reduce the numbers of illegal visa overstays.
Though illegal immigration likely will never be eliminated, we need to do everything reasonably possible to reduce it to levels that are easily manageable. To do this, we need a more effective method of tracking individuals whose visas have or are about to expire. In addition to this, we need to simplify the process of renewing or extending visas. Also, it is important to have well known and well enforced punishments to visa overstays (Deportation). In fact, the process of renewing or extending a visa should be simple enough that legal immigrants who wish to stay have no need to think twice about whether they wish to extend their visa or not.
Illegal border crossings is another problem to solve. From the table above, this form of illegal immigration is still a sizable issue that we need to attempt to solve. The first step is to complete the border barrier. A barrier would discourage some, though not all immigrants from attempting to cross into the United States illegally. Next would be additional processing facilities and funds for providing for those who are in U.S. custody. Once they try to claim asylum we have to process the claim and hold the immigrant until processing is completed and we know if the claim is valid or not. Next would, of course, be to require that immigrants file for asylum at authorized border crossing facilities, U.S. embassies or U.S. consulates anywhere in the world. I would also suggest that we create an online form that could be completed on either a computer or mobile web browser to expedite the process for those with access to those types of technology. You can also discourage illegal immigration by changing the legal immigration process.
- Legal Immigration
One problem with our legal immigration process is we do not have a transparent list of who has the best chances of acceptance through our immigration system. There are also many different forms to file, each with different processing times, which is available at the U.S. Citizen and Immigration Services website. Some can be as quickly as 0.7 months, while some can take over 20 months and one taking as long as 43.9 months. We should strive for a processing time of no more than a range of 6 - 8 months for all forms where possible with clear instructions on how to fill each form out and who qualifies for that particular form of immigration. It may also be possible to merge the functions of some forms into a single form. I would also suggest that each form can be filled and submitted online as well through either a computer or mobile web browser.
- Natural born citizenship and anchor babies
Natural born citizenship is something I had thought on for quite a long time. I wish to retain this clause and the idea of natural born citizens and to retain the requirement that the President must be a natural born citizen as well but place some restrictions on being born a citizen of the United States. Those changes are below but subject to change as I become more informed on how this change would be enacted and enforced and how it could possibly affect the United States in the future.
- If one parent is a citizen of the United States, their children born in the United States are born citizens as well, regardless of the citizenship or immigration status of the other parent.
- If both parents are legal immigrants, their children born in the United States are born citizens of the United States. The parents would be given permanent legal status as well if they hadn't already been granted it and they would be placed on an expedited patch to citizenship.
- Children born to two U.S. citizens will be natural born citizens, even if born outside of the United States.
- Children born to a legal immigrant and an illegal immigrant will be born citizens of the legal immigrant parent's country of origin. If the first country rejects the citizenship of the child, the child will be determined to be a citizen of the other parents country of origin.
- Children born to two illegal immigrants will be born citizens of the country of origin of the parents. If the parents have different countries of origin, the parents may choose which of their countries of origin they wish for their child to be a citizen of. If the first country rejects the citizenship of the child, the child will be determined to be a citizen of the other parents country of origin.
- In the event all possible nations do not recognize the citizenship of a child born in the United States in parts 4 or 5, that child will then become a naturalized citizen of the United States.
These changes could have the additional result of encouraging more legal immigration and discouraging illegal immigration to some extent.
Immigration is a complex issue with many separate parts that need to be considered. I will continue to study immigration and make changes as I become more knowledgeable on these laws and the challenges that are not widely publicized.