President Donald Trump’s deputies at the departments of state and homeland security are offering a huge giveaway to at least 400,000 foreign visa workers and their Fortune 500 employers just before the November election.
“This is the news that a lot of people have been waiting for a long time,” Greg Siskind, an immigration lawyer in Memphis, TN, said about the State Department’s giveaway.
The simultaneous giveaway by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is a “crazy [good] thing,” he said on September 24. But he warned that agency officials may quickly suspend their action once they see how many Indian visa workers will claim the surprise benefit. “Good times,” he tweeted.
“The people who are getting screwed are likely Trump voters,” said Jessica Vaughan, policy director at the Center for Immigration Studies. “This policy is sticking a knife in the back of [college graduate] people who would be his supporters.”
Trump can quickly reverse his deputies’ hidden, pre-election giveaway, said Vaughan, “if he finds out about it.”
The pre-election giveaway has two parts.
The State Department is offering green cards to roughly 120,000 additional visa workers because they took jobs needed by college graduate Americans. The offer was made on September 24, in the October 2020 Visa Bulletin, and it allows the visa workers to get the roughly 120,000 green cards that were originally allocated to family migrants who have been blocked by the coronavirus shutdown. The extra green cards are above the normal award of 140,000 to foreign employees of U.S. companies.
The second and bigger giveaway is by the officials at the Department of Homeland Security. They have offered early “filing” approval to many people in the huge backlog of Chinese and Indian visa workers. This giveaway means that Indian visa workers who asked for green cards before January 2015, via the EB-3 track for ordinary, inexperienced workers, can get the job market equivalent of a green card from Trump’s DHS deputies. That prize is a renewable work permit, dubbed an “Employment Authorization Document,” also called a “green card lite.”
“It’s a huge benefit,” said Siskind. “It is not a green card, but it is damn near close.”
DHS officials can start the green card lite giveaway on October 1.
But DHS officials are free to quickly cancel their voluntary giveaway, Siskind warned. “Get that [application request] stuff to them as quickly as you can,” he told Indian visa workers in an online presentation, adding that an additional 300,000 experienced Indian workers may switch from the EB-2 immigration track to grab the DHS benefit for lower-skilled EB-3 workers.
“Trump could stop this if he wanted to,” said a September 24 statement from U.S. Tech Workers, which represents U.S. white-collar professionals. “He just needs to instruct [DHS] to not adhere to the Filing chart published by the State Dept.”
Without the two agencies’ giveaways, many visa workers would be forced to go home once their visas expire or their companies discard visa workers during the recession. Their homeward return would be good for American graduates because it would pressure U.S. CEOs to hire American professionals instead of the preferred visa workers.
But if the Indians can get the green cards, it becomes easier for the Fortune 500 to recruit more Indian visa workers to fill out more U.S. jobs. The “effect would be to encourage more Indians to come over,” said Sara Blackwell, a Florida-based lawyer who helps Americans oppose the expanded use of visa workers.
Officials from DHS and State declined to answer questions from Breitbart News.
The giveaway comes after President Trump promoted a “Hire American” policy during his inauguration speech, after he promised “Pro-American Immigration” policies in his second term, after he signed proclamations blocking the inflow of visa workers until at least January 2021, and after he ordered officials to rewrite the regulations so that CEOs are pressured to hire Americans instead of visa workers.
The giveaway also comes as senators review the nomination of the acting chief of DHS, Chad Wolf, for the top job at DHS. Wolf is a former lobbyist for NASSCOM, the multinational trade group for the U.S.-India Outsourcing Economy, Breitbart News reported in October 2019. In the job, Wolf has taken a hard line against blue-collar migration from South America but has done little to reduce white-collar migration into Fortune 500 job.
The giveaway, however, may threaten the jobs of the GOP Senators. Once naturalized, Indian and Chinese immigrants overwhelmingly vote Democratic.
During the last few months, GOP senators have repeatedly blocked a bill that would allow the early-filing giveaway to Indian visa workers. The S.386 bill was pushed by Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT).
The giveaway was also announced in the final stretch of the 2020 election, in which Trump is facing intense pressure to raise his vote share among white-collar Americans — and among the blue-collar Americans who have helped get their children through college. “What is Trump thinking that he would allow this?” said one voter who said he cannot support Trump after seeing the giveaway.
“This [giveaway] is coming from higher up” than DHS’s U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services agency, responded Vaughan.
“It is coming from “those in the administration who are looking out for the interests of the employers, who are playing the role of lobbyist for the employers, and are most interested in filling the agenda of the employers rather than pushing [President Trump’s] pro-American worker agenda,” she said. “They think they have to do it to get the support of the big employers — but they will never get support from big tech and Silicon Valley,” she said.
In June, for example, Trump learned about the H-1B outsourcing at the Tennessee Valley Authority and then intervened to save Americans’ jobs. “This [outsourcing] issue is so hot that even [Joe] Biden gives lip service to it in his immigration position paper — Democrats know it is an issue,” said Vaughan.
But Trump is surrounded by deputies who see themselves as allies of the Fortune 500, she said. “They’ll fight hard [to keep this giveaway], they’ll fight to the end, for three reasons,” she said:
Ideologically, they are convinced that this free movement of labor is a great thing. They want to help out their [corporate] friends because potentially they are going to back to the sector when they leave the White House. And they’ve deluded themselves into believing that this a political necessity — and they are just wrong.
The backroom maneuver “shows how the special interest groups that run our guest-worker programs always manage to get workarounds to avoid the limits that Congress has put on these programs to protect jobs for U.S. workers,” she said. The programs are not about claimed shortages, she added; they’re all about preserving a pipeline of [foreign] workers to replace Americans.”
The giveaway is being downplayed by the lawyers and lobbyists who understand the Election Day unpopularity of this establishment maneuver, especially during a recession that hs sidelined millions of American graduates.
The giveaway and the green card economy are getting little coverage from white-collar establishment journalists, despite the damage it does to American white-collar workers and to Trump’s reelection chances. For example, reporters at Jeff Bezos’ Washington Post rarely cover visa worker issues.
Bezos’ Amazon company is a leading user of H-1B and OPT workers.
Immigration lawyers expect a huge windfall as the Indian and Chinese workers rush to gain their green cards and work permits.
The Expanding Green Card Economy:
The visa workers have been imported since 1990 to take the jobs needed by U.S. graduates, via the various H-1B, L-1, J-1, and other worker pipelines. Most were imported for lower-tier and routine software jobs, but an increasing number are being imported for jobs in science, health care, management, accounting, recruiting, marketing, and other white-collar jobs.
The foreign graduates accepted low-wage job offers in many Fortune 500 companies because the employers promised green cards to their favored workers.
Most of the imported workers are Indians because India’s government works with U.S. investors to exploit the huge wage difference between the United States and India.
But the corporate executives promised far more green cards to Indian recruits than roughly 23,000 per year allowed by the federal government. So the gap between the executives’ promises and the annual supply of green cards for Indians has accumulated to create a massive backlog of roughly 350,000 indentured, compliant Indian workers (plus 350,000 spouses and older children) who are choosing to wait many years for their promised cards.
But this multi-year Indian backlog is also a huge problem for the Fortune 500 companies and for India’s economic strategy because it greatly hinders their ability to recruit another wave of Indian workers.
The pre-election giveaway action by Trump’s deputies at the State Department and DHS would deliver the benefits promised by corporations to hundreds of thousands of foreign workers. They would also revive the incentive for many more Indian graduates to take more of the U.S. white-collar jobs that are needed by American graduates.
There is no limit to the number of foreigners who can temporarily get white-collar jobs in the United States.
The door is held open by administrators at U.S. colleges. They have the power to sign the enrollment documents needed by foreigners to get work permits via the government’s Curricular Practical Training (CPT) and the Optional Practical Training (OPT) programs. The two work permit programs were largely created and expanded by Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama, with no approval from Congress.
Some of those CPT and OPT graduates are hired directly by Fortune 500 companies, but many get jobs in large or small staffing companies that provide gig workers outsourced by the C-suites of Fortune 500 companies.
Indian migrants tell Breitbart News that many subcontractors hire OPTs and CPTs — as well as overstay illegal aliens — to fill the outsourced Fortune 500 jobs.
These migrant gig workers often work for sub-minimum wages because they hope to eventually win the green cards that are dangled by Congress and employers. This Green Card Economy includes at least 1.3 million foreign graduates who arrived via the H-1B, J-1, L-1, Optional Practical Training (OPT), Curricular Practical Training (CPT), or H4EAD workforce pipelines. For example, the H-1B program includes at least 600,000 workers; the H4EAD program includes at least 100,000 workers; while the OPT and CPT programs keep at least 400,000 foreign workers in U.S. white-collar and technology jobs.
In contrast, roughly 800,000 Americans graduate each year from four-year colleges with skilled degrees in health care, engineering, business, math, science, software, or architecture. Many American graduates are forced into other careers — despite college debts — because CEOs prefer to hire less-proficient visa workers for starter jobs.
The presence of these many legal and illegal foreign workers ensures a loose labor market where employers never have to compete against each other for U.S. graduates, for example, by offering full-time employment, benefits, and decent wages.
Many CEOs also prefer visa workers because they are disposable and subservient. For example, the workers are employed and swapped by a dizzying variety of subcontractors who can move blocs of labor from one city to the next, to fill short term contracts, with little notice or compensation to the disposable workers.
In contrast, American professionals speak their minds, push for high-quality products, ask for higher wages, change employers, collaborate to develop innovative products, and sue their employers and testify in court. The resulting pressure on executives spurs innovation and quality gains, U.S. experts and managers tell Breitbart News.
But once managers get comfortable with compliant visa workers, American professionals are “supposed to answer in a very subservient way,” Mary from central New Jersey, a foreign-born software expert, told Breitbart News. She added:
I would tell [the female executive] professionally what the issue was, and she didn’t like that. You can’t oppose her in any way. If she tells you, “It is black,” it has to be black even if it is white. [The Indian contractors] will feed her what she wants to hear … They cater specifically to that [attitude].
When the information given to that manager is wrong, and that manager does not care, the professionalism of the field is gone.
Most of these green card workers are also part of the U.S.-India Outsourcing Economy. The outsourcing economy allows U.S. investors to boost stock values by hiring blocs of cheap Indian graduates for U.S. jobs. It also allows investors to transfer jobs to India by first importing Indians for training by Americans who are getting replaced.