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Photo: Greg Baker / AFP via Getty Images

The Trump administration has threatened to cut back on employment-based immigration and end the DACA program. Meanwhile, the U.S.'s neighbors to the north and south are dueling to attract Silicon Valley's foreign talent who feel unwelcome under Trump.

Why it matters: Everyone wants a piece of Silicon Valley. With tech companies under increasing political and legal pressure to help their employees who could be targeted by changing immigration policies, Mexico and Canada's proximity to some U.S. tech hubs could pay off.

Our thought bubble: Advocates for foreign tech workers will argue Trump's policies are making it harder for the U.S. to recruit the best and the brightest. So far, at least, the immigration crackdown hasn't scared away a significant number of talented tech workers, but Mexico and Canada are ready to be the backup plan.

Canada

Last year, Canada announced a new tech visa with faster processing times.

  • We reported last year that numerous startups in the tech hub of Toronto say they have had steady, double-digit increases in job applications from the U.S. since the 2016 presidential election.
  • Microsoft has submitted the 10th highest amount of LCAs — the applications required before submitting H-1B petitions — and employs 45 Dreamers. When asked what the company's contingency plan was in the face of the Trump administration's proposed immigration policies, Microsoft President Brad Smith told Axios in a February interview:
Vancouver is and always will be 143 miles from Seattle. We can employ people in Canada.
— Microsoft President Brad Smith
  • Some India-born tech workers in the U.S. are moving to Canada, drawn by the faster visa processes, despite the lower wages, according to Quartz.
Mexico
  • Governor Aristóteles Sandoval of Jalisco, which is home to Mexico's "Silicon Valley" in Guadalajara, has been selling the country's tech community since Trump took office.
    • He just finished touring the Silicon Valley last month, unveiling a new tech travel visa to entice U.S. workers to Guadalajara as well as a start-up portal to encourage collaboration.
    • In an open letter to U.S. tech companies last year, Sandoval wrote: "To our colleagues in U.S. tech companies who are adjusting to policy changes affecting your 85,000 foreign workers, the Mexican state of Jalisco hears you."
  • Facebook, Oracle and Amazon have expanded into Jalisco over the past year, Reuters reported several months ago.
"Given what has been proposed by the administration that creates uncertainty, it is leading companies to try to achieve certainty, and that includes looking both at talent but also hiring talent in multiple places, here and abroad."
— Dean Garfield, President of ITI
  • India-based tech industry has already established itself in Guadalajara over the past decade, with companies like TCS, Wipro and Infosys setting up shop there.
    • Mexico’s Ambassador to India, Melba Pria, told the Indian Express that if the Trump administration cracks down on visas, they will be “more than happy to have Indians relocate to Mexico.”

Go deeper

Updated 15 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Bill Clinton hospitalized for non-COVID-related infection

Former President Bill Clinton. Photo: Win McNamee/Pool/AFP via Getty Images

Former President Bill Clinton was admitted to the University of California, Irvine Medical Center on Tuesday for a non-COVID-related infection, his spokesperson Angel Ureña said Thursday.

The latest: In an update on Friday, Ureña said Clinton's health indicators are "trending in the right direction, including his white blood count which has decreased significantly."

Tina Reed, author of Vitals
5 hours ago - Health

FDA panel endorses shot of J&J booster for adults

Photo: Wolfgang Kumm/picture alliance via Getty Images)

Members of the Food and Drug Administration's vaccine expert panel on Friday unanimously endorsed a booster shot for adult recipients of Johnson & Johnson's COVID-19 vaccine at least two months after the initial dose.

Why it matters: The advisory committee raised concerns about a dearth of data to support their decision but ultimately decided to support an additional shot for those over 18.

Capitol Police officer indicted for obstructing Jan. 6 investigation

Trump supporters clash with police and security forces as people try to storm the Capitol on Jan. 6. Photo: Brent Stirton/Getty Images

A U.S. Capitol Police officer has been indicted on obstruction of justice charges for allegedly helping hide evidence of a participant's involvement in the Jan. 6 riot.

Driving the news: Officer Michael A. Riley, 50, is accused of telling the unidentified participant, referred to as "Person 1," in the Jan. 6 riot to delete posts from Facebook, which showed them in the Capitol during the attack.