Tech advocates in Washington are eager to work with the incoming Biden administration and reverse many of President Trump’s immigration policies, especially those that created barriers for high skilled visa holders.
Some of the biggest names in Silicon Valley have clashed with the Trump administration in court, suing over his executive orders restricting immigration for foreign workers. They’re now making clear to the next administration that nixing Trump’s actions are the industry’s top priority for 2021.
The Trump administration announced new immigration rules last month designed to make it more difficult for skilled workers to acquire visas. The rules tighten requirements for employers who hire workers on H-1B visas, which are set aside for skilled workers, particularly in the technology field.
TechNet, a group of industry executives from companies like Amazon, Apple, Cisco, Dell, Facebook, Google, filed amicus briefs is support of lawsuits challenging the new rules.
If they’re unsuccessful, they hope President-elect Joe Biden will rescind or revise the rules.
“They’ve indicated they are going to be very different than the Trump administration on high-skilled immigration, immigration in general,” said TechNet CEO Linda Moore. “High-skilled immigration…has led to so much growth and technological superiority and competitiveness for the U.S.”
The Biden transition team declined to comment.
TechNet has been active in the courts challenging Trump’s immigration policies. In addition to the most recent lawsuit, it joined other business groups in July to sue over an executive order suspending the issuance of certain temporary worker visas through the end of 2020.
The court later sided with the business groups by exempting them from the order.