Ramaswamy, Once a User of H-1B Workers, Is Now Opposed to Program as a Candidate

By David North on October 9, 2023

Vivek Ramaswamy and his rival for the GOP presidential nomination, Donald Trump, have both used foreign workers in their corporate lives. While the former hired few of them and paid them well, Trump did the reverse, as we previously noted.

Now Ramaswamy, according to Politico, has taken a public position against the “very system he’s used in the past to hire high-skilled foreign workers for the pharma company that built much of his wealth”.

That report goes on to say:

From 2018 through 2023, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services approved 29 applications for Ramaswamy’s former company, Roivant Sciences, to hire employees under H-1B visas. ... Yet, the H-1B system is “bad for everyone involved,” Ramaswamy told Politico.

An examination of Roivant Sciences’ record with myvisajobs.com shows that the company sought to hire the 29, but probably secured only 10 of them because of the operations of the visa lottery, a nuance that Politico missed.

“The lottery system needs to be replaced by actual meritocratic admission. It’s a form of indentured servitude that only accrues to the benefit of the company that sponsored an H-1B immigrant. I’ll gut it,” Ramaswamy said in a statement, adding that the U.S. needs to eliminate chain-based migration (which H-1B often causes).

The candidate seems to be against H-1B (as it stands) not because he wants to limit immigration’s impact on U.S. workers, but because H-1B brings in not-so-skilled workers. He wants a more talented set of H-1Bs, not a smaller group of them, an attitude that meshes with his former role as an employer of them.

Migration Backgrounds of the Candidates. Both Ramaswamy and former Gov. Nikki Haley (R-S.C.), another presidential hopeful, are routinely noted in the media as being children of immigrants, but there is another candidate for the Republican nomination whose immigrant ancestry is seldom mentioned; he is Donald Trump, who is the son of a U.S.-born father and a mother who was born on bleak Harris-Lewis, the wind-swept island off the western coast of Scotland. I have been there and can understand why she left.