The EB-5 Visa program was recently thrust into the national spotlight after White House advisor and President Trump’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner, was prominently featured in advertisements at an event his family’s company hosted. The ads, which proclaimed: “Invest $500,000 and immigrate to the United States,” were roundly condemned. After initially declining to comment on the inference of corrupt inducement, the Kushner family eventually apologized for mentioning Jared Kushner.
The Kushners are no strangers to using the EB-5 program to generate investments in their projects. Neither is the President. This controversial program has been likened it to an express lane for high net worth individuals to buy U.S. citizenship; its history has been rife with fraud and abuse. In exchange, real estate developers access a cheap source of capital because investors are willing to accept a lower return for the enticement of permanent resident status in the United States. The New York Times, U.S. Government Accountability Office, and Department of Homeland Security Inspector General have all published extensive analysis on many of the program’s shortcomings. Congress has repeatedly threatened to shut it down. Some astute commentators also point out the flummoxing inconsistency of the U.S. turning away refugees fleeing from violence while concurrently selling green cards to the highest bidders.
What do you think? Should the EB-5 Visa Program Be Reformed?
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