Lyndon B. Johnson Signing the Immigration Act of 1965

lyndon b johnson signing

Congressional Evaluation of the Immigration Act of 1965

Above is a photo of Lyndon B. Johnson signing the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965, and I’ve also attached a copy of an evaluation of the act three years after it was signed into effect. Notably, the congressional evaluation marks a major change in immigration policy brought about by the Immigration Act of 1965: “The operation of the existing safeguards to the American labor market…was reversed. A nonrelative alien intending to take employment is now required to obtain a certification from the Secretary of Labor that (A) his employment will not adversely affect the wages or working conditions of those similarly employed, and (B) that there are not sufficient workers in the United States able, willing, qualified, and available for such employment.” This speaks to a long-lived belief that an influx of immigration will seriously damage the job market, and more importantly shows the discriminatory practices towards people with an outsider status. The fact that neither of these premises are a matter of objective evaluation is indicative of an exclusive practice meant to keep jobs from immigrants while guaranteeing the posterity of those with citizenship.

Interestingly enough, the new standards brought about by the Immigration Act of 1965 superseded those of previous acts that instituted strict quotas, most notably the provisions of the National Origins Act of 1924, which restricted immigration on the basis of existing proportions of the population. This brought about a more open policy to immigrants from Asia, Africa, and the Middle East. So while this act in effect allowed more immigrants to enter the country, the makers of the law were still concerned with the loss of opportunity at home for citizens; a reflection of public opinion at the time regarding the view of immigrants and their effect on the country.



Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: