Trump announces immigration proposal at White House — live updates

President Trump is discussing his plan to prioritize high-skilled immigrants and restrict family-based migration and physical border security in the White House Rose Garden on Thursday, but the proposal is still light on details. 

“Our proposal is pro-American, pro-immigrant, and pro-worker. It’s just common sense,” the president told supporters and reporters on Thursday. 

Mr. Trump said this proposal will finally make the system fair, transparent and open to all. The White House says the proposal would tighten family-based migration to focus on allowing nuclear families to migrate to the U.S., rather than extended family members. It would also encourage those with bachelor’s degrees, relevant vocational degrees or higher levels of education to come to the U.S. and stay, rather than returning to their home countries once they’re done with their education, the senior administration official said.

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“We discriminate against genius,” the president said Thursday, adding, “We won’t anymore, once we get this passed, and we hope to get it passed as soon as possible.”

Spouses and children will go “right to the front of the line,” Mr. Trump said Thursday, but extended family members will be much less likely to be allowed to come to the U.S, with then. 

But the president’s proposal won’t include anything to protect undocumented immigrants who arrived as children, it’s unclear if a single Democrat has been consulted, and some Republicans have offered tepid responses to the proposal. The administration official could not offer a timeline for releasing text of the proposal, saying it would be released when it’s ready. 

“Right now this is the Trump plan. We’re hoping this will become the Republican plan,” said a senior administration official who briefed reporters on the outline of the plan Wednesday. 

The official said the White House thinks it has a good sense of where many Democrats stand, but intends to put the proposal out and gauge the reaction. “Let’s see” what happens from there, the official said.

The senior administration official who briefed reporters Thursday said the “president’s mandate to us is come up with something” detailed that can unify Republicans. 

But can it pass?

“Maybe we can, maybe we can’t. But we’re going to try like hell,” the senior administration official said. 

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