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Photo: Carolyn Kaster-Pool/Getty Images

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) said on Monday that President Trump's expansion of legal immigration restrictions — including a temporary ban on high-skilled H-1B visas — will have a "chilling effect" on the country's economic recovery.

Why it matters: Graham is one of Trump's closest allies in the Senate. He and many pro-business groups, including major tech companies and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, have expressed disapproval at the decision to restrict legal immigration during the pandemic.

What he's saying: Graham tweeted, "Those who believe legal immigration, particularly work visas, are harmful to the American worker do not understand the American economy."

  • "Work visas for temporary and seasonal jobs covering industries like hospitality, forestry, and many economic sectors can only be issued AFTER American workers have had a chance to fill the job position."
  • "Before coronavirus, legal immigration and programs like these played an important role in helping President Trump create the strongest economy in generation. I have little doubt that programs like these would help him build it again."
  • "Unfortunately, I fear the President’s decision today to temporarily shut down these programs will create a drag on our economic recovery."
  • "The shuttering of these programs may not lead to employment opportunities for displaced American workers, but could instead increase the cost of consumer goods for Americans — particularly service industry related products," he added.

The big picture: The Trump administration on Monday banned U.S. entry for foreigners on specific temporary work visas through 2020, including high-skilled H-1B visas.

  • The move expands on earlier coronavirus-related immigration restrictions, which have also been extended through the end of the year.
  • Per Axios' Stef Kight, the additional restrictions will also affect H-1B spouses, non-agriculture worker H-2Bs visas, short-term workers on J-1 exchange visas, and L visas, which allow companies to move employees working overseas to U.S. offices.

Go deeper

Dems on Senate Judiciary tell Graham to delay filling Ginsburg's seat

Senate Judiciary Committee Ranking Member Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) speaking in August.

Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee, led by Ranking Member Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), called on Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) to delay filling Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg's seat on the Supreme Court until after the presidential inauguration.

What it matters: Democrats cited the Senate GOP's refusal to consider President Obama's nomination of Merrick Garland following Justice Antonin Scalia's death in 2016. Republicans at that time claimed voters should choose the president and the president should select the justice, since the vacancy occurred during an election year.

10 mins ago - World

Report: "Clear evidence" China is committing genocide against Uyghurs

The scene in 2019 of a site believed to be a re-education camp where mostly Muslim ethnic minorities are detained, north of Kashgar in China's northwestern Xinjiang region. Photo: Greg Baker/AFP via Getty Images

Chinese authorities have breached "each and every act prohibited" under the UN Genocide Convention over the treatment of Uyghurs and other Muslim minorities in China's Xinjiang province, an independent report published Tuesday alleges.

Why it matters: D.C. think-tank the Newlines Institute for Strategy and Policy, which released the report, said in a statement the conclusions by dozens of experts in war crimes, human rights and international law are "clear and convincing": The ruling Chinese Communist Party bears responsibility.

Updated 2 hours ago - Technology

Twitter sues Texas AG Ken Paxton

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton at February's Conservative Political Action Conference in Orlando, Florida. Photo: Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Twitter on Monday filed a lawsuit against Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton (R), saying that his office launched an investigation into the social media giant because it banned former President Trump from its platform.

Driving the news: Twitter is seeking to halt an investigation launched by Paxton into moderation practices by Big Tech firms including Twitter for what he called "the seemingly coordinated de-platforming of the President," days after they banned him following the Jan. 6 Capitol insurrection.