July 19's Fact of the Week: 1952 McCarran-Walter Act

The 1952 McCarran-Walter Act, also known as the Immigration and Nationality Act, removed total ban of Chinese immigrants but still upheld national origins quotas. The act illustrates a mixed bag in terms of reforms of Asian Americans. The first provision establishes naturalization rights and allows Asian immigrants to naturalize to U.S. citizenship. As a result of this provision, a anomalous status of “aliens ineligible to citizenship” is knocked off the U.S. immigration law. The second provision increases the immigration quota from various Asian countries (China: 205, Japan: 185). Although these numbers were not large, they represent a positive reform. The third provision broadened the subversion clauses even more so a whole host of activities could be considered a subversive activity and considered dangerous to the U.S.. The fourth provision established a stringent set of screening procedures for Aliens coming in and out of the country. Aliens with permanent resident status would be subject to the screening program, and any undesirable aliens would not be admitted to the U.S. Taken as a whole, the act was incredibly unpopular.