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Greg Siskind on Immigration Law and Policy


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Reader "legal-forever-waiting-forever" posted this piece from the conservative newspaper the New York Sun on how protectionist immigration policies keeping out foreign scientists and technology professional are hurting America.

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  1. Grace's Avatar
    When I read articles like these, the saying that always comes to mind is "cutting off our nose to spite our face".

    There is a small, vocal, and virulent group of individuals who have decided that immigration is the reason they [pick one or more]: 1) don't have the job they want; 2) don't have a job 3) the country is going to hell 4) Americans want these jobs, but don't get a chance because of the foreigners who take them. This group has terrorized Congress from taking any actions to increase the H-1B cap, develop programs to nurture immigrant talent at the PhD level to keep it in the US, or look in any honest way at how the world and the market works.

    When a research lab is looking for a scientist, they look at what the scientist has by way of skills and knowledge - they don't care what the scientist's nationality is, just can the scientist do the job. Unfortunately, most of the labs now know that if the scientist they want is not a permanent resident, they may not be able to hire him or her, as green card delays and issues with the H-1B cap deter many qualified scientists from staying in the U.S.

    Every year, I think that finally we will see intelligent immigration reform - relief from the H-1B numbers, more numbers for scientists, backlog relief to ensure that talented intending immigrants will decide to stay here, and not take their talents to other countries. I was sure that H-1B relief would come in some form this year, after we exausted the H-1B cap in less than 60 days in 2006; little did I expect that the H-1B cap would be gone in one day in 2007 - and still, no hint of help from Congress, as H-1B relief sank with the rest of Comprehensive Immigration Reform.

    While I agree with the article's sentiments, I doubt that anyone in Congress will be brave enough to take this on until we are past the 2008 elections - hurting our businesses and our country as a whole.
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