Chain Migration Advocate Gives Trump a Million, But Gets No Policy Change

By David North on October 13, 2020

All too many of those promoting mass immigration are rich, savvy, and successful in their policy moves.

Sunday's New York Times lead article about how President Trump has used his hotels to secure funds from political favor seekers unwittingly tells another story, of a chain migration advocate about whom the last two adjectives do not apply.

Quoting from the article:

It was springtime at President Trump's Mar-a-Lago club, and the favor-seekers were swarming.

In a gold-adorned ballroom filled with Republican donors, an Indian-born industrialist from Illinois pressed Mr. Trump to tweet about easing immigration rules for highly skilled workers and their children.

"He gave a million dollars," the president told his guests approvingly, according to a recording of the April 2018 event.

Thousands of words later, the article picked up that thread again:

Another guest at the event, the Indian-born industrialist Shalabh Kumar, said Mr. Trump was a welcoming host. During Mr. Trump's run for office, Mr. Kumar and his family had donated more than $1 million and organized a group to turn out Hindu voters.

. . . he also wanted something: for Mr. Trump to extend permanent residency to the adult children of highly skilled workers with long-term visas, who have had difficulties because of a green-card backlog for their parents. . . .

He had come prepared. Mr. Kumar pulled out a notebook and showed the president the draft of a proposed tweet about addressing the adult-children problem.

"Pretty good," Mr. Trump said. He tore out the page and put it in his pocket, Mr. Kumar said. That precise tweet never came, but a different one arrived that winter, which Mr. Kumar welcomed as support for the cause, though the administration's policies remain unchanged.

What the India-born Kumar wanted was to give green cards to the children of Indian H-1B workers, thus granting immigrant visas to probably hundreds of thousands of children of nonimmigrant workers, a huge change in migration policy that could only be done – in my eyes at least – through legislation. This is not a change that could be arranged through an executive order, thus my characterization of Kumar's proposal to the president as neither savvy nor realistic.

Kumar, as the Times did not note, has since changed his mind about the President, partially because of his handling of Covid-19, and partially because of the failure of the adult children proposal, according to an Indian publication.  It went on to say:

Kumar told India-West he also wants the president to take a stand approving India's Citizenship Amendment Act, a controversial measure passed last year that grants citizenship to undocumented Indians but excludes Muslims.

So the industrialist wants an expansive migration policy in the U.S. and a restrictive one in India, with regard to Muslims. It looks like he is getting his way in his native country but not in his adopted one.