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President-elect Joe Biden is expected to reverse Trump’s immigration policies during his first days in office. Those moves include extending the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program and lifting the Remain in Mexico policy, which forced 60,000 migrants to wait for court dates in dangerous Mexican border towns. Yet some recent changes to the immigration system may take several months or even years to restore. Sarah Pierce, a policy analyst at the Migration Policy Institute, said the Trump administration has set up over 400 executive actions that could be difficult to dismantle. Trump’s policies also led to a decline of legal immigrants coming to the U.S., a trend that could take years to reverse. NPR
In other federal immigration news…
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Citizenship Tests Getting Harder
The Trump administration intends on making the naturalization test, given to immigrants who apply for citizenship, longer. This could make it even more difficult to obtain citizenship. The last update to the test was made in 2009, yet the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services announced last year it would make changes. According to a memo given to CNN, revisions include raising 10 civics test questions to 20, and changing the passing score to 12/20 instead of 6/10. The administration also increased the price of online naturalization applications from $640 to $1,160 earlier this year. CNN
Biden’s DHS Transition Teams Announced
Biden’s transition team is ready to take power even if Trump decides not to concede. On Tuesday, Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris announced hundreds of members to their “agency review teams,” which will figure out the workings of Cabinet departments and agencies and facilitate a smooth transition. Ur Mendoza Jaddou is expected to lead the Department of Homeland Security review team. Jaddou served as a U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services’ chief counsel during Obama’s presidency. Esther Olavarria, who worked in DHS during the Obama administration, is also slated to serve on the DHS review team. Politico
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