January 22, 2021
Examining President Biden’s Immigration Proposal
President Biden plans to send Congress a legislative proposal to reform the U.S. immigration system, which includes creating an eight-year pathway to citizenship for nearly 11 million unauthorized immigrants. In a new analysis, AAF’s Douglas Holtz-Eakin, Whitney Appel, and Isabel Soto examine the key provisions in this proposal and its potential shortcomings.
A notable weakness is the absence of large-scale changes to the core criteria for obtaining an immigration visa, such as the American Action Forum has proposed. Given the low fertility of the native-born population, the diminished rates of business startups, and poor recent productivity growth, this is a missed opportunity to raise the trend growth rate in the United States. One would expect pro-growth additions to the U.S. Citizenship Act of 2021 to be at the center of the legislative debate.