HARTFORD, Conn. -- U.S. Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), flanked by laid off IT workers on Tuesday, spoke about the abuse of the H-1B visa system.
There are 5,669 workers in Connecticut employed under the H-1B program, Blumenthal said at a press conference. "How many of them have displaced American workers? We don't know," he said. "How many of them have been hired instead of American workers? We don't know.
"But we know that increasingly," the senator said, foreign workers are being used to displace Americans "because they can be employed more cheaply."
Blumenthal's press conference was another sign of the rising political visibility of the H-1B issue. The implications of this attention are unclear.
Legislative reforms are stalled, and discrimination cases in court remain undecided, but the issue may be getting the most attention it has ever received.
At rallies for Donald Trump, the billionaire businessman seeking the Republican presidential nomination, Disney IT workers have spoken about being replaced by foreign labor.
Trump was endorsed by Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.), the head of the Senate immigration subcommittee. That committee has held two hearings during this legislative term on the impact of H-1B visa holders on highly skilled workers.
Trump, at the Miami GOP candidate debate, appeared to suggest ending the H-1B program. His platform details H-1B reforms, and the endorsement by Sessions, a leading Republican critic on illegal immigration, may be seen as a sign that Trump is serious. But in some public statements during debates, Trump can seem wobbly on H-1B issue.
Republican presidential candidate Ted Cruz, a Texas senator, once called for a massive H-1B cap increase but has since become...
Read More HERE