Search JTA's historical archive dating back to 1923

House Immigration Committee Decides on 2% Quota

December 21, 1923
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

As a result of the second Executive Committee session today, all the main features of the immigration bill to be reported to the House are practically decided upon. Though decisions and votes taken officially are only supposed to be tentative yet judging from the attitude revealed, it is very unlikely that the Committee will change its mind when the final vote is taken. It has been decided to embody the decisions in forms which the tentative committee will print for the use of its members when the final vote is taken. These decisions are as follows:

A two per cent quota based on the 1890 census for all immigrants except relatives of citizens as a husband or a wife. A father or mother over fifty-five years of age and unmarried children under eighteen will be exempt from all quota restrictions.

Congressman Samuel Dickstein, Democrat, of New York, a new member of the Committee made a strong fight against the 1890 census, urging at least the retention of the three percent. quota based on the 1910 census. This plea being without avail, he proposed the three percent quota based on the 1890 census to be operated as follows: Preference up to one per cent is to be given to the wife, husband and unmarried children under eighteen years of declarants, resident in the United States for two years; the remaining two percent to be allotted to all other aliens.

Conflicting statements were made to your correspondent regarding which plan was accepted. Congressman Dickstein declared the Committee adopted the latter scheme whereas a spokesman for the Committee who usually makes official announcements of the Committee’s decisions, stated that the tentative vote was simply an acceptance of the two percent. quota based on the 1890 census. In any event, Dickstein will make a strong fight in the final voting for his compromise proposal and there is probably some likelihood if its adoption.

The Committee also decided in favor of immigration certificates by consuls, the possession of which will admit an alien as a matter of right so far as qota restriction is concerned thereby avoiding hardship of excess quota upon arrival here. The Committee rejected the proposal of a physical inspection abroad on the ground of international objections despite Congressman Raker’s unceasing efforts to obtain its acceptance.

Congressman Dickstein was the only friend of immigration fighting in the Committee today as Congressman Sabath left Washington for Chicago at this most crucial time. Dickstein made strong effort enlarge list of exempt relatives but failed to budge Committee which for most part was solidly in favor of increased restriction.

Recommended from JTA