The US State Department gave visa officers more power to block pregnant women from visiting the US on Thursday. This power will allow officers to prohibit any women believed to be traveling to the US for the “primary purpose of obtaining U.S. citizenship for a child by giving birth in the United States—an activity commonly referred to as birth tourism.” The “B” nonimmigrant visas covered by this rule also require that applicants who seek medical treatment in the United States must be able to prove, to the satisfaction of visa officers, their arrangements and ability to pay for such treatments.
Both President Donald Trump and conservatives have argued that birth tourism results in “anchor babies”— children born in the US and used by their parents to assist other family members in entering the country. They have also linked anchor babies to the dramatic increase in immigration and criminal activity.
White House Press Secretary Stephanie Grisham stated that this new rule is both aimed at pregnant immigrants and protecting the American taxpayer dollars.
The new rule aimed to stop those who seek automatic and permanent America citizenship for their children by giving birth on American soil. It will also defend American taxpayers from having their hard earned dollars siphoned away to finance the direct and downstream costs associated with birth tourism. The integrity of American citizenship must be protected.