Zuckerberg's advocacy group FWD.us released a statement Wednesday calling Trump's proposal that the U.S. deport 11 million illegal immigrants "absurd." Posted by FWD.us president Todd Schulte, the statement doesn't name Trump specifically but calls out the "voices yelling for mass deportation," an immigration reform idea Trump has supported.
FWD.us's statement reads as a retort to Trump's first policy paper on immigration reform, in which he refers to Florida Senator Marco Rubio as "Mark Zuckerberg's personal senator," implying Rubio takes his immigration policy cues from the Facebook co-founder. Here's what the FWD.us post says about the consequences of mass deportation:
"[D]eporting 11.5 million people would cost U.S. taxpayers $400 to $600 billion dollars, and would take at least 20 years to complete. Even worse, this mass deportation would reduce our GDP by $1.7 trillion--over 5 percent. Many industries would be hit hard, others--like agriculture, construction and hospitality--would be devastated."
FWD.us also fired back against proposals to limit programs like the H-1B visa that allows U.S. companies to employ foreign workers, calling any plan to "radically restrict pathways" for skilled immigrants to come to the U.S. "just wrong." In his plan, Trump is calling for making it more expensive to hire H-1B visa holders, as well as making it more difficult for companies to replace U.S. workers.
While Trump and Zuckerberg's FWD.us represent policy positions that are in direct conflict, SiliconBeat points out that Trump has supported some proposals favored by those in the tech industry, such as efforts to help foreign students stay and work in the U.S.
When foreigners attend our great colleges & want to stay in the U.S., they should not be thrown out of our country.— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 18, 2015
I want talented people to come into this country—to work hard and to become citizens. Silicon Valley needs engineers, etc.— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 18, 2015