Donald Trump, in a stunning upset, has been elected the 45th president of the United States. Given the president-elect's history of anti-immigration rhetoric, the election results have left many new Americans wondering if their visa will be revoked when Trump takes office.
Whether that will happen is hard to predict. Over the course of his campaign, Trump did not exactly lay out a legible agenda. But one thing he has made clear is that immigration reform would be a priority in his first 100 days in office.
How will a Trump presidency affect visa holders?
A number of visa options exist for people entering the United States. Trump has not laid out which are in jeopardy or which will be preserved, but he has spoken broadly about what he plans to do.
Trump wants to triple the Deportation Force, which Vox says could give the government the capacity to deport 1.2 million people a year. For comparison, Immigration and Customs Enforcement deported 235,413 people in 2015, though 165,935 of them were near or on the border. It should also be noted that Barack Obama deported more people than any other president in U.S. history. But Trump wants to take those removals to another level.
In theory, this would only affect unauthorized immigrants, meaning those with visa papers may remain unaffected. But if Trump has shown us anything over the past 18 months, it's that you never know how far he's going to take things.
Trump also wants to make it more difficult for American companies to hand out visas to immigrant workers. This, along with his proposed Mexican wall, firm stance on Syrian refugees and overall ban on Muslims would make it extremely hard to enter the country — both illegally and legally.
But what Trump plans to do with already settled legal immigrants remains unclear. While we know he wants to "keep [incoming] immigration levels within historical norms," he hasn't addressed those who have already arrived legally. It's likely that those who hold documents such as a green card would be safe, otherwise he'd have to deport residents like his wife.
We do know that once you've been deported, reentering the country would result in stiff penalties. Trump's plan for his first 100 days in office says he'd instate:
...a two-year mandatory minimum federal prison sentence for illegally re-entering the U.S. after a previous deportation, and a five-year mandatory minimum for illegally re-entering for those with felony convictions, multiple misdemeanor convictions or two or more prior deportations.
As Trump's presidency takes shape, we'll get a clearer vision of what exactly he plans to do in those instances.