The move is the latest hard-line move from an administration that's made repeated efforts to reduce both legal and illegal immigration into the country. It comes days after raids by federal authorities on poultry processing plants in Mississippi separated immigrant workers from their families.
Under the new regulation, visa and green card applicants could face additional scrutiny — and possible rejection — if they have little money or little education. Use of benefits such as Medicaid, housing vouchers and food stamps also could count as strikes against applicants.
While the rule doesn't affect doesn't affect refugees or asylum seekers, human-rights groups warn that it discriminates against immigrants from poor countries and could lead to legal residents forgoing access to food, housing and medical care.
The new rule will have the "deepest, widest and most long term impact" of the Trump administration's many immigration policy changes Marielena Hincapié, executive director of the National Immigration Law Center, told CNN. Her group plans to file suit to stop the new policy.
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