The Trump administration is reportedly looking to implement a plan that would stop admitting refugees from entering the country next year—cutting the number of admissions to zero, Politico reports.
According to the report, which cites “three people familiar with the plan,” a United States Citizenship and Services representative suggested the administration set the admission rate cap to zero, virtually shutting down the admission process.
Other people present at the meeting with the representative and other “security officials” reportedly floated the idea of admitting only 3,000 to 10,000 refugees.
The possible move comes after the Trump administration cut refugee admissions by a third this year, to 30,000.
If the administration shuts down refugee admissions, it would give President Donald Trump a powerful talking point as he makes immigration restrictions a centerpiece of his reelection campaign.
The State Department declined to discuss the possible cap. The departments of Homeland Security, Justice, Defense and the National Security Council, which had representatives at the meeting, did not respond to requests for comment.
The meeting of roughly 20 officials last week, which took place in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building, represents a preliminary step in the annual process of setting the admissions cap, according to those with knowledge of it.
USCIS official John Zadrozny and the State Department’s Andrew Veprek — both known as Miller allies — argued in the meeting that the refugee cap should be low because of ongoing security concerns and the ability of the U.S. to offer humanitarian protections through the asylum process, according to an attendee.
While Trump has previously said he was considering stopping all immigration to deal with the current backlog, he has recently remained quiet on how his administration will handle the issue should he be re-elected. Immigration will undoubtedly be a centerpiece of his re-election campaign as the calendar nears 2020.