The American Interest
Analysis by Walter Russell Mead & Staff
Skilled Immigrants on Fast Track to US?

Obama may already be delivering on his promise to ease immigration restrictions for highly skilled entrepreneurs and engineers. A new bill is wending its way through Congress to do just that, as the WSJ reports:

The Startup Act 3.0, a bipartisan Senate bill expected to be introduced this week, aims to get 75,000 new “entrepreneur visas” every year to founders who raise $100,000 for new ventures that hire at least two employees within a year and at least five in the following three years.

The measure also would create 50,000 visas per year for foreign students who graduate from U.S. universities with advanced degrees in science, technology, engineering or mathematics, and spend at least five years pursuing careers in those fields.

The bill will likely be folded into the President’s immigration reform package, but we would like to see this prioritized. Immigration reform is always a divisive issue in Washington, and the comprehensive package Obama has spoken of is likely to take a long time to get done, if it passes at all. We would prefer that the fate of an important measure like this not be tied to a long, partisan floor fight.

An influx of highly skilled and driven immigrants looking to generate wealth and jobs would be a major boon for the economy, and it’s safe to say that it could use a boost right now.

[Image courtesy of Shutterstock.com]

Published on February 14, 2013 5:58 pm