Startup Visa Act: Good But Not Enough

The Kerry/Lugar bill tying work visas to economic growth is a good start, but it's too little to help the U.S. meet global competition

I have always been one of the staunchest supporters of the Startup Visa Act. But I now worry the legislation introduced by Senators John Kerry (D-Mass.) and Richard Lugar (R-Ind.) may well get approved—with overwhelming support from both parties. Our leaders will declare victory and claim that they have made the U.S. more competitive. But we won't see the expected startup activity or get the economic boost our economy desperately needs. That's because the bill is far too limited and our competitors are advancing more rapidly than even I had predicted. And the chances are this will be the only immigration bill that gets passed until the next elections—when it will be too late to fix the bigger problems. My team's research at Duke, UC-Berkeley, NYU, and Harvard revealed that in the 1995

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