Immigration

Tech Firms Want Immigration Rules Loosened for Skilled Workers

Any good reason to not admit engineers and scientists?

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Silicon Valley firms are presenting a rare united front in an effort to end a political logjam that has blocked high-tech immigration reform.

In an unusual show of support that underscores how important the topic has become, executives from Facebook, Google, eBay and other major tech companies sent a letter today to President Obama and congressional leaders asking them to fix immigration law by the end of 2013. The current system is broken, they say, blaming visa shortages, long waits for green cards, and difficulties bringing spouses and children to the United States.

"Because our current immigration system is outdated and inefficient, many high- skilled immigrants who want to stay in America are forced to leave because they are unable to obtain permanent visas," says the letter, which notes that immigrants founded eBay, Google, PayPal and Yahoo. "Some do not bother to come in the first place."