Vance proposal: Immigrants pay up to $15k to enter the U.S.

Posted on Jul 27, 2023

Sen. J.D. Vance announced today a proposal to force immigrants to the U.S., including those visiting the country as tourists, to pay as much as $15,000 in cash or as a bond to ensure their timely return to their country of origin once their visa expires.

Details of the legislation, given exclusively to Fox News, make clear that Vance is attempting to stop the problem of visa overstays. Under Vance’s proposal, anything from $5,000 to $15,000 could be payable in cash or secured via a bond, with the amount recoverable once an immigrant to the U.S. returns.

Fox reports:

The bond system would not apply to certain temporary visas, including diplomatic visas, visas for human trafficking victims and visas for those transiting through the country. It would apply to tourist and business visas, but not to those nationals who are enrolled in the Visa Waiver Program – which allows nationals of some countries to come to the U.S. for 90 days for pleasure or business.

In addition, the proposal would apparently not apply to green card holders. Fox notes that “the money would… be returned to them when they leave the U.S. in accordance with the terms of the visa, or transfer to a green card” (our emphasis).

Currently, forty countries — mostly in Europe, but also some in Asia and Oceania plus Chile (the only Latin American country on the list) participate in the Visa Waiver program. Notably, Israel is not included on the list. Nor are Mexico, Colombia, Brazil, or India, which are among the top ten countries from which tourists to the U.S. came as of 2022. Previously, China had made the top ten but likely dropped off due to the country’s tight COVID restrictions.

Buckeye Briefing has reached out to AIPAC to ascertain if they have any concerns about the proposal given that it appears it would require Israeli citizens to pony up as much as $15,000 in cash or bond security in order to travel to the U.S.