Senator Mike Rounds’s effort to water down EB-5 vias reforms isn’t sitting well with Trump’s base.. or at least it won’t after they read their daily dose of Breitbart. Conservative hack Neil Munro writes that Rounds’s bill is good for China and India and bad for rural South Dakota:
South Dakota GOP Sen. Mike Rounds has drafted a bill that would help wealthy Chinese buy citizenship — and would also help steer investment away from the heartland states towards the increasingly wealthy states on the coasts.
…The long waits make it difficult for the U.S. real-estate industry to sell more EB-5 green cards to Indians or Chinese lenders.
Rounds’ bill will fix that real-estate funding problem by allowing Chinese and Indians lenders to skip their waiting lines after just three years if they get “parole” from the secretary of the Department of Homeland Security.
The foreigners have an obvious strategy to get parole: Persuade Rounds and other legislators to pressure the DHS secretary until the secretary quietly approves the parole requests.
…Rounds’ bill also apparently reduces the incentives for investors to put their money into lower income areas. On page 87, his bill cuts the loan requirement for normal, non-poor locations to just $1.1 million, down from the $1.8 million in the USCIS regulations. But Rounds’ bill sets the price for TEA areas at $1 million. This shift means his bill offers only a $100,000 incentive for lenders to put their money into lower-income areas.
Rounds’ staff did not respond to emails from Breitbart News [Neil Munro, “GOP Sen. Mike Rounds Pushes EB-5 Visa Bill Which Aids Chinese, Indian Migrants, Coastal Cities,” Breitbart, 2019.11.17].
Don’t let me get into the habit of saying that anything Breitbart publishes is right… but Breitbart is right. Rounds is doing favors for rich foreigners who can pay more for a ladder over Trump’s “wall” while reducing the incentive that those foreigners have to invest their money in projects that would help rural areas like South Dakota. I’m still struggling to figure out what the junior Senator from South Dakota expects to bring home to South Dakota from this bill.