Tech pans merit-based immigration bill


The tech industry came out swinging against Trump's latest push to restrict immigration, denouncing a White House-backed Senate bill that would cut legal immigration — i.e. green cards — in half and move to a merit-based system.

How it works: The bill, known as the RAISE Act, doesn't actually touch temporary employer-sponsored (H-1B) visas that the tech industry cares about most. Instead it would cut back on family visas and and cap permanent residency for refugees in favor of skilled workers that meet certain criteria. Senators Tom Cotton and David Perdue, the sponsors of the legislation, argue this approach will reduce the number of low-skilled immigrants that compete with Americans for low-wage jobs.

Tech vs Trump, again: Favoring skilled workers while leaving H-1B visas alone might seem like a decent deal for the tech industry. But instead, tech sees it as exacerbating the skills shortage while injecting more bureaucratic dysfunction.