Trump, Kansas and the Immigration Civics Test

By now most of you, if not all of you know that Donald Trump posted a tweet saying that the Kansas City Chiefs are based in Kansas instead of Missouri. It got me thinking about immigrants. Specifically, I started to think about what is required to become a U.S. citizen, the citizenship test, and how Donald Trump wants immigrants who meet certain standards to come to America.

Recently, the Supreme Court declared that it would not review the “public charge” that is slated to be implemented on February 24. The “public charge” is an immigration regulation that an immigrant can be denied immigration status if they are deemed to be unable to provide for themselves. It has been a part of the immigration law for some time now, but it was rarely applied. Most immigrants qualified if someone stepped forward, a necessary step in most cases, and agreed to be responsible for the immigrant.

Under the Trump rules, the “public charge” now requires that an immigrant seeking permission to live in the United States has never used any social benefits. Immigrants who are not legally in the country are prohibited from using social benefit programs. But, their American citizen children qualify because of their citizenship.

Previously, the immigration services did not consider whether the children of immigrants applying for legal status have used social benefit programs. Under Trump it can be grounds for denial.

Donald Trump has also been pushing the idea that he wants the immigration system to be moved away from family reunification towards a “merit-based” immigration system where immigrants must meet certain standards to be allowed into the country. In other words, only those that Trump deems will Make America Great Again need apply and all others should scurry away.

One thing that has not changed or talked about, is the civics test that all immigrants must take to become U.S. citizens. The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services refers to the test as “The Naturalization Test”. The test includes questions about the immigrant’s background, an English test and a civics test. According to the immigration office, the applicant is given two opportunities to pass each section of the test.

Donald Trump’s obvious geographical lapses and consistent grammatical errors got me thinking, would Donald Trump pass the immigration civics test?

I decided to take a civics practice test online at the immigration website. I got a 95% because I missed one of twenty questions. It is a multiple-choice test. I selected John Adams instead of James Madison in the question about naming one writer of the Federalists Papers. The questions are chosen at random. These are the questions I answered. In a few of the questions, I couldn’t help but giggle to myself thinking of how Donald Trump would answer the question. I put in brackets what I was thinking.

Civics Practice Test
1. Why does the flag have thirteen stripes?
2. When was the Constitution written?
3. What ocean is on the West Coast of the United States? [Not sure Trump would get this right]
4. What stops one branch of government from becoming too powerful? [One of the possible answers offered was “the president”. Somehow, I think Trump would have selected that answer.]
5. What movement tried to end racial discrimination?
6. What is one reason colonists came to America?
7. What is one power of the federal government?
8. Name one writer of the Federalists Papers? [I missed this one: I selected John Adams instead of James Madison]
9. Who was president during World War I?
10. What is the name of the President of the United States now? [I seriously thought about choosing Mike Pence, over the correct answer because it was hard to put “president” and Donald Trump together.]
11. Before he was president, Eisenhower was a general. What war was he in? [I am sure Trump would this wrong by choosing The Civil War, or may be the War of Independence as the correct answer.]
12. Why did the colonists fight the British? [Tea, would likely be the answer Trump would select, but lucky for him it was not part of the available answers.]
13. Who is the Chief Justice of the United States now?
14. Name one U.S. territory. [The choices were Bermuda, Haiti, Cayman Islands & Guam. I think many would not know the correct answer to this question.]
15. What does the judicial branch do? [The one choice that I believe Donald Trump would pencil in is “get in the way” was not one of the choices available.]
16. There are four amendments to the Constitution about who can vote. Describe one of them. [One choice was: “Citizens by birth only can vote” is an answer I think Trump would choose. The correct answers is obviously any citizen, including naturalized immigrants.]
17. When must all men register for the Selective Service? [Bone spurs was not one of the choices, but it made me giggle anyway.]
18. Who lived in America before the Europeans arrived? [These were the choices offered: “Canadians, Floridians, no one, American Indians”. Somehow, I think Donald Trump gets this one wrong.]
19. Why do some states have more Representatives that other states?
20. Name one branch or part of the government.

I didn’t do too bad on the test as I only missed one, but some of the questions do require some thinking. If I want to become a U.S. citizen, I need to pass this test.

But as we all giggle about Donald Trump not knowing where the Kansas City Chiefs are based, we should all ask – would Donald J. Trump pass the immigration civics test that immigrants who want to become a U.S. citizen must pass? Somehow I do not think he would pass the test because it has too many questions about the Constitution.

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