The updated legislation would institute a merit-based points system similar to the process used in Canada and Australia for skilled foreigners seeking to permanently move to the U.S. for work. The goal, according to Perdue's office, is to make sure U.S. businesses look outside the country only for high-skilled workers they can't find in the U.S., while incentivizing the employment of American workers, particularly for gigs that require less education.
It would also keep most of the bill's original proposals in tact, including slashing the number of refugees allowed into the country each year and limiting the types of family members legal residents can bring to the U.S. Under their proposal, spouses, dependent children and sick parents would be given preference, but not adult children, healthy parents or extended family.
>> Read the details of the proposal on myAJC.com
In other words, the legislation would codify many of Trump’s key campaign promises.
Backers of the bill hope Trump’s seal of approval will help increase its odds of passage in the Senate, where Republican leaders so far have not indicated any interest in advancing the proposal. While there is some consensus in the party when it comes to illegal immigration, the legal side is seen as more controversial, since many U.S. businesses rely on foreign workers being able to settle in the U.S.
The proposal is likely to face stiff opposition from Democrats and many immigrant and refugee advocacy groups, who slammed the first proposal.
Perdue disagreed with their assessment, arguing his bill has wide appeal.
“Why wouldn’t you support this?” he told reporters later. “It’s pro-growth, it’s pro-worker. It’s actually been proven to work. This is not an experiment.”