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Alan Greenspan renews call for H-1B expansion

Patrick Thibodeau | Dec. 21, 2015
Does the former Fed chair know what he’s talking about?

These workers, at Disney and Southern California Edison, in particular, are reshaping the political discussion, filing lawsuits, meeting with lawmakers, sharing their experiences and providing some of the building blocks for a new round of legislation designed to curb use of the H-1B visa.

Visa reform has also become a part of the platform of several presidential candidates, including Donald Trump, the billionaire businessman seeking the Republican nomination, along with U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas). On the Democratic side, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) is a critic.

If this new attention to the H-1B issue has affected Greenspan's views at all, it's not apparent. But he didn't talk about the IT labor force. The example he used at the conference for increasing the H-1B cap focused on a narrow part of labor market.

"If you really want to increase productivity we would really open that program up, and anyone who got a Ph.D. in the physical sciences in the United States would be allowed to stay. Instead, we kick them out," said Greenspan. "Why we do this is bizarre and beyond me."

 

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