Research Paper on How have the US’s immigration laws changed in the past decades?

Soon after independence was won by the United States from Great Britain, immigration started being regulated by the United States. The migrant flows and politics of those times have been reflected by the laws that got created after Independence. Limits that favored Europeans were imposed by early legislation, but doors to immigrants were opened by a 1965 law and invited them from all parts of the globe. Presidential actions and laws in more recent years have got shaped by the concerns related to terrorism, unauthorized immigration, and refugees.

The first law that specified who can become a U.S. citizen was the 1790 law. The privilege to free Whites was limited by this law. Further, the right of citizenship was extended to those of African origin in the 1870. Later, a series of restrictions emerged on immigration in 1875. They involved bans on importers of prostitutes, beggars, anarchists, polygamists, individuals with contagious diseases, and criminals. The increasing of Asian immigrants was targeted by other restrictions. From Asian countries, immigration was banned and from China, migration was limited. Further by the early 1900s, the predominant flow of immigration of the nation shifted towards Eastern and Southern Europe from Western and Northern European nations.

In response, laws were passed in 1924 and 1921. Restoring earlier patterns of immigration was the key objective of these laws by imposing numerical quotas and by capping total annual immigration. This capping was based on immigrant nationality that also favored Western and Northern European countries. Moreover, in 1943 long-standing restrictions related to immigration started when a number of Chinese were allowed to immigrant by a law. Further, a limited number of visas was allowed by legislation in 1952 for other Asians and for exclusion the race was removed formally.

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