CAPAC Denounces Proposed Cuts to Legal Immigration System

Aug 2, 2017 Issues: Immigration

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, President Donald Trump announced support for the RAISE Act, a bill introduced in the United States Senate by Senators Cotton and Perdue that would dramatically cut America’s legal immigration system by moving from a family-based immigration system to a merit-based system. Members of the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus (CAPAC) released the following statements:

Congresswoman Judy Chu (CA-27), CAPAC Chair:

“The RAISE Act is a direct assault on our longstanding values as a nation of immigrants, and I vehemently oppose this xenophobic bill. This proposal to slash our current legal immigration system by 50% and to create a bureaucratic ‘points’ system will disproportionately impact the Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) community. Although AAPIs comprise 6 percent of the total U.S. population, they account for over 40 percent of the 4.3 million individuals languishing in our current family immigration visa backlogs, often waiting decades to reunite with their loved ones.

“It is clear that moving to a merit-based system that favors English-speaking, high-skilled individuals is only meant to further President Trump’s anti-immigrant agenda by creating a false classification of ‘good’ immigrants versus ‘bad’ immigrants. In reality, these drastic cuts to our legal immigration system would devastate America’s economic growth and threaten our competitive advantage to attract the best talent to our shores.

“America wins when people are welcomed and integrated into our society and given the chance to contribute to the U.S. economy. Immigrant families fill critical gaps in our workforce, open new businesses, and help to create jobs to improve local economies across the country. Instead of advancing proposals driven by fear and hate, Republicans should work with Democrats to focus on comprehensive immigration reform legislation that will reunite families, strengthen our economy, provide a pathway to citizenship, and ensure that America continues to remain the land of opportunity for all.”

Senator Mazie K. Hirono (HI):

“It is shortsighted to think that America became the great nation it is by only letting certain kinds of people into our country. Yet, this is exactly what the Trump-Cotton-Perdue proposal does. Instead of doubling down on the bigotry and irrational fear of immigrants he promoted during the campaign, the President should work with members of both parties to pass comprehensive immigration reform.”


The Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus (CAPAC) is comprised of Members of Congress of Asian and Pacific Islander descent and Members who have a strong dedication to promoting the well-being of the Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) community. Currently chaired by Congresswoman Judy Chu, CAPAC has been addressing the needs of the AAPI community in all areas of American life since it was founded in 1994.