The current political fight over the extension of DACA protections will show how much influence the tech giants have in Washington under this still new administration.

DACA, which is the Obama-era executive order protecting certain formerly undocumented immigrants who arrived in the United States as children, is very firmly supported by all Big Tech's leading players. Technology companies such as Google and Apple were among the first and most active employers of DACA recipients, and they have been very vocal in their support.

Unlike in the case of the tax bill, where Big Tech supported the administration and Republican Congresses' plan for tax reduction, or in the case of net neutrality, where Big Tech is split between content providers like Netflix and infrastructure providers like AT&T, Big Tech is quite unified in its support of DACA.

At the present moment, the DACA battle is a political one, as it is the political football being tossed around as Congress attempts to avert another showdown. It is also a legal fight, after a San Francisco judge issued an injunction preventing an end to DACA protections until either a Congressional or Supreme Court resolution.

However, at some point, the debate will again leave the political and legal realms and become economic, and this will test and show Big Tech's relative influence with this administration. If DACA protections are ultimately rescinded, Big Tech will have to decide whether to push hard against the administration that the policy is harmful both to their companies and the overall economy.

At that time, Big Tech's influence in this new era - or lack thereof - will be laid bare.

Published on: Jan 30, 2018