Microsoft lobbied Obama for H-1B increase shortly before laying off workers
Microsoft urged the government to "remove caps that bar entry into the U.S. by high-skilled immigrants," about three weeks before announcing its first companywide layoff, according to a report in BusinessWeek.
The request, part of a policy brief written in June 2008 and posted to the Obama-Biden Transition Project Web site in early January, does not represent a new stance for the company, which has long lobbied for changes in U.S. immigration policy around high-skilled workers. But its posting on the new administration's transition Web site came at a sensitive time, against the backdrop of layoffs -- which hit a "significant number" of guest workers at the company -- and pressure on Microsoft by Sen. Chuck Grassley to retain U.S. citizens over similarly qualified guest workers...
The BW article is from Moira Herbst (see this for the to-be-expected pun). Note also that there might be something else involved to make Grassley angry: MS apparently dropped plans to build a call center in his state. That doesn't, however, make him wrong.