- The Washington Times - Tuesday, March 9, 2021

Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas said Tuesday that he has retreated on a Trump-era policy to push immigrants to be self-supportive, saying it was an affront to the country’s history as a nation of immigrants.

The Trump policy had been tied up in federal courts. The Biden team said it will no longer defend the policy, effectively nullifying it and delivering a win to immigrant-rights activists who had challenged the rule.

In response, the Supreme Court dismissed the case Tuesday.

The Trump policy had expanded the definition of what constituted a “public charge,” or someone who ended up reliant on government assistance, by adding new programs to the list to be evaluated. Those who crossed a certain threshold for government assistance would face a tougher time earning a green card under the Trump rule.

Immigrant-rights activists said migrants had been scared into not using services. They called that a public health problem amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Mr. Mayorkas concurred.

“The 2019 public charge rule was not in keeping with our nation’s values,” he said. “It penalized those who access health benefits and other government services available to them.”

The policy is the latest in a long line of Trump immigration stances the Biden team has moved to cancel.

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