TPI| From day one of his campaign, Donald Trump has made illegal immigration his central issue. Drawing attention to the economic costs of illegal immigrant labor and other associated costs (such as crime), he’s made it clear that he wants a border wall, and to ramp up enforcement of already existing immigration laws.

Within a week of taking office, he’s signed off on executive orders to accomplish just that. The Wednesday after taking office, he signed executive orders directing the “immediate construction of a physical wall on the southern border,” boosting the number of Border Patrol agents by 5,000, and the number of Immigration and Customers enforcement agents by 10,000.

Trump is tackling illegal immigration – but our current system of legal immigration needs work, too. And while he’s working on ending illegal immigration, Congress is taking steps to reform legal immigration.

From the Washington Free Beacon:

Leading senators on Tuesday unveiled landmark immigration reform legislation that would limit the number of refugees permitted into the United States each year and eventually cut total immigration to America by 50 percent.

Sens. David Perdue (R., Ga.) and Tom Cotton (R., Ark.) revealed the Reforming American Immigration for Strong Employment Act, or RAISE Act, which aims to boost wages for Americans by slicing immigration levels and recalibrating the system to accommodate those seeking employment in the American workforce.

The bill would cap the number of permanent refugees permitted in the United States to 50,000 per year, which the lawmakers say is in line with average numbers during the past 13 years.

Overall immigration would be lowered to 637,960 within the first year of implementation and to 539,958 by year 10, according to these models. This would account for a 50 percent reduction over 2015 levels, which topped out at 1,051,031, according to information provided by the lawmakers.

Note, this DOES NOT affect visas that are specifically tied to employment, such as the H-1B visas that are awarded to skilled foreign workers (usually employed here by technology companies). It’s only low-skilled legal immigrants that this legislation would affect.

According to a study published in 2007, there were then 2.7 million households headed by low-skilled immigrants, which received an average of $30,160 in government benefits and services while only paying $10,753 in taxes. That’s a total net cost of nearly $53 billion – and that was a DECADE ago. The welfare state has only ballooned since then.

Liberals are always saying we should learn from other countries – and many of those who panicked after Trump’s victory and tried to move to Canada quickly learned that you actually need to have marketable skills to immigrate to Canada. Why not operate under the same standard here?