Trump Backtracks on H1-B Visas

Donald Trump stepped back from previous statements critical of a massive expansion in H1-B visas during the Republican debate yesterday.

Trump was asked, “You have been very critical of Mark Zuckerberg of Facebook, who has wanted to increase the number of these H-1Bs –.” He cut in to say he was “not at all” critical of Zuckerberg. He continued, “In fact, frankly, he’s complaining about the fact that we’re losing some of the most talented people. They go to Harvard. They go to Yale. They go to Princeton. They come from another country, and they’re immediately sent out. I am all in favor of keeping these talented people here, so they can go to work in Silicon Valley.”

In his immigration plan, Trump criticized efforts to expand the H1-B visa plan and specifically mocked Marco Rubio, a major proponent of the scheme to triple the number of foreign workers allowed into the country as “Mark 150629062326-donald-trump-june-16-2015-exlarge-169Zuckerburg’s personal Senator.”

Trump’s final statement on H1-B visas seemed to support expanding the program:

“I’m in favor of people coming into this country legally. And you know what, they can have it anyway you want. You can call it visas. You can call it work permits. You can call it anything you want.” After saying he will create jobs, Trump continued, “As far as Mark is concerned, as far as the visas are concerned, if we need people, it’s fine. They have to come in to this country legally. We have a country of borders. We have a country of laws. We have to obey the laws. It’s fine if they come in, but they have to come in legally.”