Elon Musk says he 'very much' disagrees with Trump's suspension of H-1Bs and other temporary work visas

Elon Musk says he 'very much' disagrees with Trump's suspension of H-1Bs and other temporary work visas
Elon Musk (center) and President Donald Trump (right).Evan Vucci / AP
  • President Donald Trump on Monday announced plans to suspend a collection of immigrant visas until the end of 2020.
  • One of the affected visas is the H-1B, which tech companies often use to attract talent.
  • Tesla CEO Elon Musk tweeted he "very much" disagreed with the decision and said H-1B applicants were "net job creators."

Elon Musk has joined top tech CEOs to hit back against President Donald Trump's decision to halt a variety of immigration visas until the end of the year.

Trump told reporters on Monday that all H-1B, H-2B, H-4, J-1, and L-1 visas would be suspended. The tech industry frequently uses the H-1B visa program to hire talent from abroad, as it applies to engineers. Trump said the reasoning behind the suspension was to block immigrants from taking jobs Americans might hold at a time of spiking unemployment caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

The tech billionaire Musk tweeted about the decision on Monday evening. "Very much disagree with this action," he said. "In my experience, these skillsets are net job creators. Visa reform makes sense, but this is too broad."

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Musk did not elaborate on what kind of visa reform he would support. Musk is himself an immigrant, having come to the US via Canada from South Africa as a young man.

This is not the first time Musk has challenged Trump's immigration policy.


In 2017, Musk published a series of tweets criticizing the ban Trump imposed on people immigrating from majority-Muslim countries — though he quickly deleted them, later saying the tweets were drafts he had accidentally published.

Musk joins other tech executives and companies in speaking out against the order, though his rhetoric is less forceful than others.

Google CEO Sundar Pichai tweeted: "Immigration has contributed immensely to America's economic success, making it a global leader in tech, and also Google the company it is today. Disappointed by today's proclamation — we'll continue to stand with immigrants and work to expand opportunity for all."

"Now is not the time to cut our nation off from the world's talent or create uncertainty and anxiety. Immigrants play a vital role at our company and support our country's critical infrastructure," tweeted Brad Smith, the president of Microsoft. "They are contributing to this country at a time when we need them most."