In a move organized by FWD.us, the immigration reform group led by Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, business leaders from across the country have released an open letter encouraging President Trump to preserve the DACA “Dreamers” program and calling on Congress to pass the bipartisan DREAM Act or similar legislation.
In 2013, POLITICO obtained a prospectus for what would become FWD.us which stated that Microsoft founder Bill Gates and Silicon Valley investor Marc Andreessen were founding members of a group named “Human Capital” and detailed how the technology executives would use their companies to ‘control the avenues of distribution’ for a political message in support of their efforts.
Under a section called ‘our tactical assets,’ the prospectus lists three reasons why ‘people in tech’ can be organized into ‘one of the most powerful political forces.’
1: We control massive distribution channels, both as companies and individuals. We saw the tip of the iceberg with SOPA/PIPA.
2: “Our voice carries a lot of weight because we are broadly popular with Americans.
3. We have individuals with a lot of money. If deployed properly this can have huge influence in the current campaign finance environment.
The open letter, verbatim:
August 31, 2017
To: President Donald J. Trump
To: Speaker Paul Ryan; Leader Nancy Pelosi; Leader Mitch McConnell; and Leader Charles E. Schumer
As entrepreneurs and business leaders, we are concerned about new developments in immigration policy that threaten the future of young undocumented immigrants brought to America as children.
The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, which allows nearly 800,000 Dreamers the basic opportunity to work and study without the threat of deportation, is in jeopardy. All DACA recipients grew up in America, registered with our government, submitted to extensive background checks, and are diligently giving back to our communities and paying income taxes. More than 97 percent are in school or in the workforce, 5 percent started their own business, 65 percent have purchased a vehicle, and 16 percent have purchased their first home. At least 72 percent of the top 25 Fortune 500 companies count DACA recipients among their employees.
Unless we act now to preserve the DACA program, all 780,000 hardworking young people will lose their ability to work legally in this country, and every one of them will be at immediate risk of deportation. Our economy would lose $460.3 billion from the national GDP and $24.6 billion in Social Security and Medicare tax contributions.
Dreamers are vital to the future of our companies and our economy. With them, we grow and create jobs. They are part of why we will continue to have a global competitive advantage.
We call on President Trump to preserve the DACA program. We call on Congress to pass the bipartisan DREAM Act or legislation that provides these young people raised in our country the permanent solution they deserve.
Tim Cook / CEO Apple, Jeff Bezos / CEO Amazon, Mark Zuckerberg / Founder & CEO Facebook, Sundar Pichai / CEO Google Inc., Satya Nadella / CEO Microsoft Corporation…
Full list of signatories here.
MacDailyNews Note: According to Reuters:
President Donald Trump is expected to rescind an Obama administration policy that protects from deportation nearly 800,000 immigrants who as children entered the country illegally, setting the stage for a fight with U.S. business leaders and lawmakers over tough immigration policy.
A senior administration official told Reuters on Thursday that the plan could be announced as early as Friday and that Trump would let the so-called Dreamers stay until their work permits expire. Trump, a Republican, had pledged on the election campaign trail to scrap all of Democratic former President Barack Obama’s executive orders on immigration.
White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders told reporters that Trump and his senior advisers were still reviewing the DACA program and that the president not made a final decision on how to proceed. Asked whether Trump still stood by a comment in February about treating Dreamers “with heart,” Sanders said: “Absolutely, the president stands by his statement.”
Ten Republican state attorneys general in June urged the Trump administration to rescind the DACA program, while noting that the government did not have to revoke permits that had already been issued. If the federal government did not withdraw DACA by Sept. 5, the attorneys general said they would file a legal challenge to the program in a Texas federal court. The effort was led by Texas and joined by state attorneys general in Alabama, Arkansas, Idaho, Kansas, Louisiana, Nebraska, South Carolina, Tennessee and West Virginia. Kayleigh Lovvorn, a spokeswoman for Texas attorney general, on Thursday said her office has no plans to push back the Sept. 5 date.
Immigrants who entered the country illegally as children have been able to qualify for DACA if they were under the age of 31 when the program began on June 15, 2012. They would have to have entered the United States before they turned 16, however, and to have lived continuously in the country since June 15, 2007.
Read more in the full article here.
Laurene Powell Jobs’ Emerson Collective buying The Atlantic – July 28, 2017
President Trump tells Apple CEO Cook that U.S. needs comprehensive immigration reform – June 20, 2017
Laurene Powell Jobs launches new website in ‘DREAM Act’ push – January 22, 2013
Laurene Powell Jobs looks to create bipartisan support for DREAM Act immigration reform – December 18, 2012