America’s scorn for skills is extraordinary. The share of permanent visas granted for economic reasons (as opposed to kinship) fell from 18% to 13% between 1991 and 2011. In Canada it rose from 18% to 67%. The Partnership for a New American Economy, a pro-immigration group, warns that America is “falling behind in the global race for talent.” China, meanwhile, offers some highly skilled returners not only free homes but also cash to buy furniture.
We permit some of the best and brightest people from around the world to come to this country to earn college degrees, but then turn them away or put obstacles in their way when they request to stay here to work or start businesses. That's hardly a winning strategy for economic progress and growth. This is an important issue that should be at the top of this presidential campaign.