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Trump to set refugee cap at lowest level since caps were put in place: report

Trump to set refugee cap at lowest level since caps were put in place: report
© whitehouse.gov

The Trump administration is planning to lower the cap for refugee admissions to 45,000 — its lowest point since the U.S. began setting the limits in 1980.

The Wall Street Journal reported the proposed cap on Tuesday, but said the number will not be finalized until President Trump confers with members of Congress on Wednesday. 

The planned decrease is Trump's latest move to curb the the number of refugees allowed to enter the U.S. After taking office in January, he lowered the cap to 50,000 and also tried to temporarily suspend refugee admissions altogether as part of his travel ban executive orders.

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Former President Obama announced last year that the U.S. would accept up to 110,000 refugees in 2017. In recent years, the cap has generally fallen between 70,000 and 80,000.

Trump, however, campaigned against increasing refugee admissions, arguing that it presented a risk to national security.

The State Department had initially sought a cap of at least 50,000, but later updated its recommendation to 45,000. The Homeland Security Department's recommendation was slightly lower, according to the Journal.

Since the U.S. government began setting refugee admissions caps in 1980, the limit has never gone below 67,000, according to the Journal. In the early 1990s, the annual cap soared to 110,000.