Synopsys CEO Aart de Geuss urged Blank not to couple the separate immigration issues out of concern no broad bill will pass the contentious Congress. “I understand the complexity in Washington, but in this part of the world we see what is happening in the Far East where great universities are appearing…and we are leaving top talent on the shelf,” he said.
Two other panelists described problems with the current immigration policies and difficulties changing them.
Laura Mather, founder of Silver Tail Systems, said one of her company’s key employees has unique skills in handling security for services that get as many as 300,000 clicks per second. He is an Australian who wants to move to the U.S.
“Other than inside Google, there are probably ten people in world who can get such a system up…but if he doesn’t hear more in a year his situation and ours could change dramatically,” she said.
Garrett Johnson, chief executive of SendHub, said in a former role he helped write two draft versions of legislation for the entrepreneur’s visa, but they failed to gain adequate backing.
“[Seantors] McCain and Hatch ran away [from supporting it] in 2010 when it came time to win their primaries,” said Johnson. “If we hang our hopes on broad immigration reform and a McCain and Hatch can run away in 2010, what could happen to others,” he asked, noting both sides are responsible for a lack of progress as they try to appeal to diverse voting blocks.