Few intellectually honest observers would dispute that Donald Trump’s election was based in no small part on channeling white ethno-nationalist fears. More specifically, the United States is expected to become a non-white majority country mid-century. Estimates vary, but it’s estimated to happen possibly in 2044 at the earliest. Trump’s unapologetically racist tirades and policies against Mexicans, Muslims and other non-white and/or non-Christian people appeal to precisely this white ethno-nationalist base fearful of non-white majority America.
A recent New York Times op-ed puts it in simpler terms: Trump wants to Make America White Again, or turn back the clock to an earlier time when the colored people knew their (subordinate) place in (white-dominated) American society. You know, the good ol’ days for the good ol’ boys:
The White House is assertively working to make America white again, and Democrats are too afraid to speak that truth. The aggressive pace of deportations of immigrants of color, the elimination of the DACA program protecting immigrant children and the proposals propounded by the anti-immigration voices in the administration will all have the undeniable effect of slowing the rapid racial diversification of the United States population.
But how much can Trump really change demographic forces in the making for decades upon decades? The answer is the economist’s “only on the margin.” The Washington Post‘s analysis is similar to most in that it’s like trying to hold back a waterfall. Or, in numerical terms, five measly years at most. Factor in the lowered annual intake if Trump and the restrictionists got their way:
The Post analyzed a low-end and high-end estimate for cuts to legal immigration under the Trump plan. The low-end estimate, provided by NumbersUSA, a group that favors limiting immigration, suggests that about 300,000 fewer immigrants will be admitted legally on an annual basis. A high-end estimate from the Cato Institute, which favors immigration, suggests that as many as 500,000 fewer immigrants would be admitted. Cato bases its number, in part, on assumptions that more family visa categories will be cut.
It doesn’t sound like much of a delay, and it has more to do with domestic demographic trends (births/deaths among whites/non-white citizens) than it does with the in-migration of non-whites.