The Trump administration will allow no more than 45,000 refugees into the United States next year, officials said Tuesday, in what would be the lowest admissions level in more than a decade.
President Donald Trump is expected soon to announce the cap on refugee admissions following a lengthy debate within his administration about whether to go higher or lower.
The figure represents the maximum number of refugees the U.S. would be willing to accept. The actual number of refugees who move to the United States could actually be much lower.
The administration had been considering a ceiling somewhere between 40,000 — which the Department of Homeland Security recommended — and 50,000, the State Department’s preferred level, officials said. The new figure appears to be a compromise that Cabinet officials felt would be palatable to the president.
Still, Trump’s stated opposition to accepting large numbers of refugees and hesitation among others in his administration mean the U.S. may not intend to fill all 45,000 slots in the 2018 fiscal year that starts Sunday. The U.S. hasn’t taken in so few refugees in a single year since 2006, when 41,223 were allowed entry.
The Wall Street Journal first reported on the decision. The paper said a decision is due by Saturday. Senior administration officials must first consult with Congress, as required by law.
All of the officials…