Capitol Hill Report: White House Victories

October 16, 2017
 

White House Victories The White House has been on a roll this week with creating Conservative priorities and guidance. They have focused on issues such as immigration, religious liberty, and conscience protections. These are all very important topics to address in today’s society.
 
Immigration
President Trump made his immigration priorities clear. Specifically, he addressed border security, interior enforcement, and implementing a merit-based immigration system.  Funding the border wall is the first priority on his list.  Some of this funding would come from document processing fees when immigrants apply for benefits as well as border crossing fees. A major step to securing our border is fixing the loopholes of illegal immigration, chain migration, and asylum seekers. The Trump administration lays out the necessary measures to address the massive backlogs and identifying legal practices of entering the United States.

Sanctuary cities and visa overstays contribute to the problems we see with illegal immigration. Some of the problems with sanctuary cities have been addressed by Attorney General Jeff Sessions already, but President Trump is restricting them even more.  Sanctuary cities continue to breed crime and gang activity.  By combining the forces of ICE officers and state and local officials, they can better address these issues. Also, implementing the E-Verify system in all businesses can ensure that employers are hiring legal immigrants.

The last priority addressed is the implementation of the merit-based immigration system.  This allows immigration based on a series of skills instead of relying on chain migration or the Diversity Visa Lottery.

Religious Liberty Guidance
Attorney General Sessions issued guidance, with the direction of President Trump, that better defines religious liberty for religious institutions. They will now be exempt from certain discrimination laws.  Organizations will be able to employ individuals of the same faith and have greater freedom over who they may hire.  The exercise of religion should not be limited to private places.  It is protected by the Constitution and will now be just as protected in the public arena.

Conscience Protections
Hand-in-hand with the religious liberty guidance, the Trump administration has issued an interim rule that provides a religious exemption to the contraception mandate for employers.  This is in response to the Zubik v. Burwell case involving the Little Sisters of the Poor.  While the mandate is still in place for most employers, those who have sincere religious objections to purchasing or funding contraceptive use may opt out of this coverage. 

The Trump administration is in the process of receiving comments about this issue.  If you would like to submit yours, you can do so here.

Eagle Forum is pleased with the work that the White House is doing to ensure our safety, better our workforce, and uphold the free exercise of religion.  We will continue to watch these issues as they are addressed by the White House, as well as Congress.