Judge Freezes Trump Plan Tying Green Cards to Benefits

Rule would turn down immigrants on Medicaid or food stamps
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Oct 11, 2019 3:32 PM CDT
Judge Blocks Rejecting Green Cards for the Poor
Hundreds of people line up outside an immigration office in San Francisco in January.   (AP Photo/Eric Risberg, File)

A federal judge in New York has temporarily blocked President Trump's plan to deny green cards to many immigrants who use Medicaid, food stamps, and other government benefits. US District Judge George Daniels' ruling Friday prevents the policy from taking effect Oct. 15, the AP reports. The Trump administration had proposed that immigrants be disqualified from getting legal US residency if they were likely to become a burden on public welfare programs. The injunction puts the policy on hold while a lawsuit over the police advances. The lawsuit in New York is one of several legal challenges nationwide to one of Trump's most aggressive steps to cut legal immigration. Advocates say the rule changes are discriminatory because they would deny legal residency and visas to immigrants who don't have money.

The lawsuit was brought by five organizations that help immigrants and the governments of New York state, New York City, Connecticut and Vermont, per NPR. Daniels ruled that they're likely to win their case. A study found that one in seven immigrant adults did not apply for a public benefit program last year because they worried about their green card applications. (Ken Cuccinelli, who's named in the lawsuit, suggested rephrasing the Statue of Liberty's poem.)

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