United States President Donald Trump on Wednesday expressed support for a new legislation that would cut legal immigration, almost by 50%, and limit green cards to refugees to 50,000 a year. The law would also promote a merit-based system for immigration, by which English speaking workers would get more points than unskilled workers.

The Reforming American Immigration for a Strong Economy Act, or Raise, aims to reduce the “overall immigration numbers to limit low-skilled and unskilled labour entering the United States”, the White House said, according to PTI.

The Bill was moved by Republican Senators Tom Cotton and David Perdue in February. Trump said it would promote a system that would “represent the most significant reform to our immigrating system in a half a century”. He said the new law would allow only those who “can speak English, financially support themselves and their families, and demonstrate skills that will contribute to our economy” to enter the US.

However, the Bill is unlikely to be passed by the Senate, Al Jazeera reported. South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham has already rejected the policy, saying it would have a devastating impact on his state’s economy, according to the report.

How this might affect India

The proposed law would end the US’ “diversity visa lottery”, where 50,000 green cards are given to immigrants selected randomly from a group of countries with low immigration rates to America. This is likely to affect India, as the diversity visa lottery programme was meant for applicants from underrepresented countries to get a green card, reported ABC Online.

However, the criteria listed by the Bill may give an edge to educated Indians, reported PTI. Indian professionals now have to wait for 11 years to get green cards. Besides, it does not cover temporary non-immigrant visas like the H1-B one that Indian professionals usually opt for.

Trump had made cutting immigration to the US a key point in his poll campaign. He has often said he believes that the US has allowed too many unskilled workers into the country who have taken away jobs from Americans.