As President Trump’s travel ban remains on hold in the federal court system, the Administration is seeking to get its “extreme vetting” through a new visa questionnaire that will be used with certain individuals seeking entry into the United States. This new questionnaire will call for data such as social media usernames and 15 years’ worth of travel, employment, and other biographical information. The questionnaires will also ask about the source of funding for the individuals’ journeys to the United States.
The government estimates that its new in-depth visa questionnaire will affect approximately 65,000 people. Who will be subjected to this new requirement? According to a document filed by the State Department in May with the Office of Management and Budget, the visa questionnaire will be used with “immigrant and nonimmigrant visa applicants who have been determined to warrant additional scrutiny in connection with terrorism or other national security-related visa ineligibilities.”
The use of this new form is likely to lead to greater delays in visa issuance and more visa denials, which may be more effective than the travel ban at deterring immigration to the United States.