“I am today starting the process of terminating the diversity lottery program… Terrorists are constantly seeking to strike our nation, and it will require the unflinching devotion to our law enforcement, homeland security, and intelligence professionals to keep America safe,”

President Donald J. Trump (11.1.17)


  1. The lottery program awards 50,000 green cards to foreign nationals through a computer-generated random drawing.

  2. The program was created by Ted Kennedy in 1990 and co-sponsored by Chuck Schumer to encourage legal immigration.

  3. Immigrant, Hesham Mohamed Ali Hedayet, obtained citizenship through the Diversity Lottery Program. He killed two in the Los Angeles International Airport shooting.

  4. Almost 1,900 aliens from state sponsors of terrorism were selected in the Diversity Visa Lottery in 2005.

  5. In 2004, the DOS Deputy Inspector General warned the diversity visa lottery “contains significant vulnerabilities to national security” from state sponsors of terrorism because of the difficulty in performing background checks in many of the countries.

  6. In 2016, 4 out of 10 source countries for Diversity Visa immigrants were on the Department of Homeland Security’s list of Specially Designated Countries that “promote, produce, or protect terrorist organizations or their members.”

  7.  Since the begining of the program, there has been widespread fraud and abuse.

  8. A Congressional Research Service report about the program found evidence of human trafficking.

  9. 56% of likely midterm voters favor ending the Diversity Visa Lottery Program.

  10. Senators Tom Cotton and David Purdue have introduced the Reforming American Immigration for the Strong Employment Act (RAISE Act). The bill focuses the U.S. immigration policy on merit and need instead of the family- based system currently in use.