US announces new rules for immigration, take off date

U.S. gov’t introduces new rules restricting legal immigration

According to Ken Cuccinelli - the acting Director of Citizenship and Immigration Services - that slogan should be updated to read, "Give me your exhausted and your poor who can stand on their own two feet, and who will not become a public charge". "Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me, I lift my lamp beside the golden door!"

Under the regulation, an applicant who receives one or more designated forms of public assistance for more than 12 months in aggregate within a 36-month period would have that weigh against them in the process of getting a green card, Cuccinelli said.

Ken Cuccinelli tweaked the famous poem from Emma Lazarus - whose words, "Give me your exhausted, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free" are long associated with immigration to the USA and the nation's history as a haven - as part of a case for strict new measures pushed Monday by the Trump administration that could dramatically change the legal immigration system.

The final version of the "public charge" rule is scheduled to be published Wednesday in the Federal Register.

Cuccinelli also made the claim that Lazarus' words were put on the Statue of Liberty "at nearly the same time" that the US passed its first "public charge" rule for immigration, which he called "very interesting timing" - though he didn't get the timing exactly right. Asked if there should be changes to the Statue of Liberty poem, he replied, "It's about America first".

In the interview, he added that immigrants are welcome "who can stand on their own two feet, be self-sufficient, pull themselves up by their bootstraps, again, as in the American tradition".

"No one has a right to become an American who isn't born here as an American".

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But applicants for visa extensions, green cards or U.S. citizenship will be subject to the change.

On Tuesday, Cuccinelli described the public charge as a "burden on the government".

Trump administration officials have been challenged before about the Statue of Liberty poem after announcing immigration restrictions.

The Democratic led House Homeland Security Committee condemned Mr Cuccinelli's revision in a tweet, calling the words "vile and un-American".

The new rule will go into effect October 15, and only government aid used after that point will be assessed, Cuccinelli said.

The Trump administration has taken the toughest stance against legal and illegal immigration of any presidency in modern times.

Cuccinelli, a former Virginia attorney general, has long held a hard-line stance against immigration and asylum policies. "I am exhausted of seeing our taxpayers paying for people to come into the country and immediately going on welfare".

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