Fewer Muslims have been Admitted to the United States Under the Trump Administration
Visa-approvals in the US for immigrants from the world’s 48 majority-Muslim countries plummeted 30 percent since 2016, amounting to 35,000 fewer immigrants from these countries in 2018, writes DAVID BIER.
Three years ago, President Donald Trump called for a “total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States.” Over time, this idea, in his words, “morphed into” various other policies that he calls “extreme vetting.”
Despite challenges, courts have largely allowed these policies to take effect, and the results are now evident: The president is achieving his stated aim of slashing entries of Muslims into the United States.
A new analysis from the Cato Institute – based on data from the State Department – makes the facts clear. On refugee policy – the area where the president has the most discretion to enact his vision – his administration has almost completely shut out Muslims.
From 2016 to 2018, the government cut admissions for Muslim refugees – which Trump has called a ‘Trojan horse’ designed to bring down America – by 91 percent.
In 2016, the government accepted nearly 40,000 Muslim refugees around the world, compared with just 3,000 in 2018. And while refugee admissions overall have plummeted, the Muslim share dropped from 45 percent to 15 percent, meaning it’s fallen at an even faster rate.
This reverses a prior trend: From 2009 to 2016, the Obama administration more than doubled Muslim refugee admissions.
This extends to legal immigration as well. The State Department fortunately does not require visa applicants to record their religion in applying for visas (imagine how Trump, who once justified his proposed ban on his stated belief that “Islam hates us,” might use that information).
Nonetheless, it is clear from data on nationality of that visa-approvals for Muslims have fallen.
Visa-approvals for immigrants from the world’s 48 majority-Muslim countries plummeted 30 percent since 2016, amounting to 35,000 fewer immigrants from these countries in 2018.
This, too, translates to a fall in the share of total immigrant visas from these countries (from 19 percent in 2016 to 15 percent this year) and reverses a trend of growing approvals for such applicants during the Obama administration.
Most of this decline can be attributed to a fall in family-sponsored immigration – what Trump refers to as “chain migration.”