Why Does Ted Cruz Want to Ban the Diversity Visa Lottery?
It’s a mystery: on December 10 2015, Republican Senator and presidential candidate Ted Cruz introduced S. 2394, a bill with two main provisions. The first provision is to restrict U.S. employers from using the H-1B Visa system to hire non-Americans at wages lower than the wages paid to Americans for the same jobs. I find that provision to be both understandable in its motivations and interesting in its effects, although I’m not sure how I come down in my opinion of this provision (I’d enjoy hearing your thoughts on Cruz’s idea).
The second provision of S. 2394 is something I just don’t understand: it would repeal the Diversity Visa Lottery, a U.S. government program that awards green cards to up to 50,000 immigrants from countries with low immigration numbers. The goal, as the title suggests, is to increase country-of-origin diversity in the immigrant pool. It is an approach opposite to that of much of the 20th Century, in which immigration quotas kept non-European immigration to an artificially low level.
Ted Cruz has introduced this provision quietly. He hasn’t issued a press release explaining his position. He hasn’t made any remarks in the Congressional Record on his bill. I am at a loss just trying to understand: why would Ted Cruz want to cancel the Diversity Visa Lottery?