Washington (Apr. 17)
Declaring that his bill “marks the first effort on the part of the United States to place its immigration upon a properly restrictive and selective basis,” Senator Henry J. Allen, of Kansas, in a speech before the Senate yesterday launched the effort to obtain adoption of Secretary Davis’ “Selective Immigration” policy, as set forth in the bill recently introduced by Senator Allen, which would subject all immigrants except those falling under the non-quota and preference classes to the “selective immigration” restriction governed by the economic requirements of the country.
“This provision does away with all of the rigidity which belongs to quota restrictions and is properly elastic,” asserted Senator Allen in his speech. “It also gives the Secretary of Labor and his associate cabinet officers the power to choose, not only Mexican labor, but in reference to labor from Canada and every other country, the immigration personnel according to the qualifications needed at the particular periods.
“It adds further necessary restrictive features to our immigration laws by providing that fifty percent of the quotas in the quota countries shall be reserved for relatives and members of families. This gives new meaning to a very necessary movement for the uniting of immigrant families.
“It is only within comparatively few years that we have sought to restrict Occidental immigration, and such restrictions as we have provided have unhappily confined themselves principally to numbers. This amendment introduces the principle of selectivity according to definite qualifications. It provides for the precise and impartial administration of this principle.
“It would be of peculiar value to us at a time like this, when unemployment has become a problem. It gives the Secretary of Labor and his associates in the cabinet the power to relieve that problem of the added burden of new immigration. It is a blessing, moreover, to those who immigrate to this country in that it prevents their coming at a time when there is nothing for them to do.”