President Trump and his administration are currently drafting an executive order designed to prompt an overhaul of the U.S. work visa program which will likely hurt Google, Facebook, and the rest of the Silicon Valley. Bloomberg obtained a copy of President Trump's draft and reports that the document declares it's been drafted primarily with the interests of the United States in mind. The order will likely force the American tech giants to reduce the amount of foreign talent they bring in by making them prioritize hiring U.S. nationals whenever possible. The initial draft of Trump's executive order allegedly still allows companies to acquire foreign talent but forces them to primarily do so when it comes to filling highly paid positions.
If signed, the order will likely add more tensions to the already shaky relationship between President Trump and Silicon Valley which took a hit on Friday after Trump prevented nationals of seven mostly Muslim countries from immigrating to the United States in the next three months. The President and his administration defended the immigration ban as a temporary measure designed to buy them enough time to come up with a new visa vetting process. However, if these latest reports are to be believed, opponents of the ban will be just as strongly opposed to the new vetting process. The list of companies that have already publicly voiced their opposition to President Trump's stance on immigration includes the likes of Google, Facebook, Microsoft, Apple, Uber, Lyft, Netflix, and Salesforce. The new U.S. administration is likely taking these controversial steps to combat alleged abuse of the H-1B visa program which some previously claimed was used to bring in cheap foreign labor at the expense of American workers. However, no systematic abuse of this work visa program was ever proven, which is an important part of the reason why the tech industry is now unified in its opposition to the course of action taken by President Trump.
Even if Trump signs the executive order in question, it remains to be seen how much power this document would have seeing how the U.S. Congress is currently working on its own reforms of the visa system that are planned to be passed into laws. Nonetheless, the clash between the newly elected President and the Silicon Valley will likely continue in the coming weeks.