The Daily Beast

Biden Keeps Trump’s Record-Low Cap On Refugee Admissions

Doug Mills

Amidst growing calls to lift the historically low yearly cap on refugee admissions into the United States, President Joe Biden on Friday signed an emergency order intended to speed the admissions process for those fleeing war, natural disaster or persecution abroad—but did not lift the cap itself, setting up a potential conflict with Democratic allies on Capitol Hill.

The order, first reported by the Associated Press, will eliminate restrictions on entry for refugees from Somalia, Syria and Yemen, while allowing for more admissions from Africa, Central America and the Middle East. Under President Donald Trump’s administration, which was defined by Trump’s open hostility to immigrants, asylum-seekers and refugees from what he once dubbed “shithole countries,” the maximum number of refugees allowed into the United States was slashed from 85,000 people to a mere 15,000.

Less than a month into his administration, Biden pledged to raise the cap to 125,000 people in order to “rebuild what has been so badly damaged” in the immigration system.

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