House Bill Would Exempt Nonimmigrants with a U.S. Ph.D. in a “STEM” Field from Annual H-1B and Employment-based Legal Permanent Resident Caps

The bill (H.R. 2182) titled the “Stopping Trained in America Ph.D.’s from Leaving the Economy” (STAPLE) Act, was introduced in the House and referred to the House Committee on the Judiciary on Thursday. While the full text of the bill is not yet available (check here for updates), Rep. Paulsen’s website reports that the bill would “exempt foreign-born individuals who have earned an American Ph.D. in science, technology, engineering, or mathematics (STEM) from the limits on the number of employment-based green cards and H-1B visas awarded annually.” The bill is co-sponsored by Rep. Mike Quigley (D-Illinois) and Rep. James Renacci (R-Ohio).

Previous versions of the STAPLE Act were introduced in the House in 2013, 2011, and 2009 but were either voted down or not brought to a floor vote. Rep Paulsen sponsored the 2013 version, and judging by the representative’s description on his website, it seems likely that the final text will resemble the 2013 iteration. Click here for the text of the 2013 STAPLE Act.