Microsoft, Twitter, others speak out against Trump's controversial immigration rule

The expanded regulation would reportedly make it more difficult for low-income migrants to secure permanent residency or temporary visas.

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The companies argue the rule creates "unnecessary obstacles" for immigrants.

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More than 100 US companies, including a handful of tech heavyweights, are urging a federal court to reject the Trump administration's "public charge" rule, which would reportedly make it easier for the government to reject green card and visa applications for low-income immigrants that it determines could be a burden on taxpayers. 

In an amicus brief filed Thursday with the the US Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, the group says the public charge rule creates "unnecessary obstacles" for immigrants looking to come or stay in the US. They argue the regulation will "will slow economic growth, prevent businesses from expanding, and break faith with core American values." 

The brief was led by Boundless, a startup that helps customers navigate the US immigration system, and signed by Microsoft , Twitter, Reddit, LinkedIn and others.

In October 2019, three federal courts blocked the administration from enforcing the public charge rule before it could take effect. Earlier this month, the Justice Department reportedly asked the Supreme Court to lift the nationwide halt on enforcement of the rule while the appeals process plays out in court. 

In response to a request for comment, a spokesman for US Citizenship and Immigration Services pointed to an August 2019 release from the agency on the public charge rule.

"President Trump has delivered on his promise to the American people to enforce long-standing immigration law by defining the public charge inadmissibility ground that has been on the books for years," said Ken Cuccinelli, the acting director of US Citizenship and Immigration Services, in the release. "Throughout our history, self-sufficiency has been a core tenet of the American dream. Self-reliance, industriousness, and perseverance laid the foundation of our nation and have defined generations of hardworking immigrants seeking opportunity in the United States ever since. Through the enforcement of the public charge inadmissibility law, we will promote these long-standing ideals and immigrant success."

The White House didn't respond to a request for comment. 

Watch this: Texas border sees tense confrontations for immigrants

Originally published Jan. 17, 8:28 a.m. PT.
Update, 1:28 p.m.: Adds response from USCIS.