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1/Trump has failed at many things. But when it comes to the central goal of his presidency -- limiting nonwhite immigration to the U.S. -- he has succeeded wildly.

And our nation will be far worse off for it.…
2/Immigration had already fallen dramatically before Trump, due to the end of the Mexican wave.

But there were still some asylum seekers from Central America (the "caravans").

Trump put a stop to that by changing the way our asylum system works.…
3/What was left?

High-skilled immigration, mostly from Asia, Africa, and the Middle East.
4/Skilled immigration was the main way that nonwhite people were still coming to America. Thus, Trump -- whose goal has always been to halt nonwhite immigration -- went after skilled immigrants from day 1.…
5/Trump paid lip service to the idea of wanting skilled immigration, but every single action he took was aimed at harassing them out of the country -- on H-1bs, STEM OPTs, green card hassles, etc.…
6/Every year I wrote a column about how insane of a policy this was. Naturally, almost no one paid attention.…
7/Now, coronavirus has provided Trump with cover to execute the coup-de-grace -- a blanket ban on skilled immigration (green cards and H-1bs), by executive order.

This is what his administration always wanted. And they won.…
8/Now let's talk about why skilled immigration won't bounce back after Trump and coronavirus are gone, no matter who gets elected.
9/Reason 1: Prospective skilled immigrants now know that the U.S. is a far more dysfunctional nation than it was in the 80s, 90s, or 00s.

Coronavirus exposed our incompetence and the Great Police Riot exposed our brutality.

10/Reason 2: Trump has demonstrated to prospective skilled immigrants that there's a large chunk of the country that hates them, views them as invaders, and wants them gone.

When even 30% of a country hates you, you probably don't move there.
11/An explosion of anti-Asian racism in the COVID age has been mostly overshadowed in the press by other issues, but it will deter Asian people from moving to this country.

And some Asian-American friends of mine are even talking about emigrating.

12/There is very little that a President Biden -- or a President AOC or anyone -- can do about this. No matter how welcoming and anti-racist their rhetoric and their policies are.

A racist minority has veto power over the American Dream.
13/And there are other reasons that skilled immigration won't bounce back. Coronavirus is going to cause long-term pain for American universities, which have been the biggest conduit for skilled immigration.…
14/Furthermore, immigration tends to build on itself. Immigrants from one region follow their friends and relatives to a particular location in the U.S.

Disrupting that effect, even for a few years, will cool the flow of immigration.
15/And finally, though I have only anecdotal evidence for this...I don't really think elite white American liberals are really going to go to bat for skilled nonwhite immigrants.

There's some submerged fear of competition there.…
16/Elite white liberals are (laudably) very willing to stand up for Honduran kids in cages. But when it comes to the prospect of competing with Indian or Chinese geniuses for plum jobs -- or their kids competing with the kids of those immigrants in schools -- they're hesitant.
17/So let's sum up:
1. The Mexican Wave is over.
2. Trump has successfully stopped asylum and refugees.
3. Trump has won his battle to stop skilled immigration, and his victory won't be easily or quickly reversed.…
18/So how COULD a President Biden or a President AOC restore U.S. immigration?

With skilled immigration and family-based immigration (which is also mostly skilled) having collapsed, there's really only one way:

Let in a large number of refugees and asylum seekers.
19/Asylees and refugees will ALWAYS want to come to America -- even a dysfunctional, racist America -- because their own countries are in a state of collapse.

There is an essentially infinite pool of prospective asylees and refugees. We just have to loosen the criteria.
20/Also, the President can let in tons of refugees and asylees without Congressional approval (just as Trump has blocked them without Congressional approval).

So I predict the immigration debate in the next Democratic administration will mostly be about refugees and asylees.
21/But the kind of immigration we usually think of as defining America -- enterprising people coming here to seek economic opportunity, diversity, tolerance, and freedom of expression -- is going to be on pause for a while.

And that sucks.
22/If we vigorously rehabilitate our image (and improve our national competence), then maybe in 2 or 3 decades, that sort of immigration can restart again. I hope.

But Trump has won. He has completed his great purpose. The Immigration Pause has arrived.
23/And you know what's ironic?

His victory was too late to prevent a majority-minority nation.

The minority-minority generation has already been born on American soil. They are citizens.

Trump won the battle, but his war was already lost.…

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