Resolved: The United States federal government should increase its quota of H-1B visas.

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Resolved: The United States federal government should increase its quota of H-1B visas.

Instead of definitions this time around, I’ll just explain what an H-1B visa is and how it works. The visa is used to allow companies to hire foreign workers to come work in the U.S. for specialty occupations that require advanced knowledge. Engineering, software development, IT, chemistry, etc…. are all good examples. The idea is to encourage and allow foreign talent to come to the United States.

Every year, there is a quota of a visas that’s allowed to be given out. For 2018, that quota is 85,000, including Masters student exceptions.

In order to debate the resolution, you must first explain with your framework how we determine what the U.S. federal government should do. What is it’s priority? Why does it exist? Using that understanding, you can explain whether or not the government should increase the quota of H-1B visas.


1. Promoting prosperity – A government’s chief function is to help promote the prosperity of its people. The government should enact policies that contribute to economic welfare, security, and progress of society. H-1B visas do just that. They draw the most talented individuals from around the world to our education and work system, helping increase the talent pool of skilled workers. This directly contributes to a better economy and technological innovation.

2. Global Competition – A government needs to ensure it remains globally competitive. In order to do that, a country needs to have a highly skilled workforce. The United States is lagging behind other developed nations on education, and so it should look to importing talent from other countries in order to stay competitive in the global market.


1. Security – A government’s purpose is to provide security for its people. That’s why a government is formed. The H-1B process is easily exploitable and poses a security risk to the United States. Many foreign workers are imported from regions of the world home to active terrorist organizations which could use the process to send recruits into the United States.

2. No reason – The burden of proof is on the affirmative, and the affirmative cannot actually provide a compelling reason to increase the quota. There is not a skilled labor shortage in the U.S., and companies really just want to be able to hire cheap compliant foreign labor. Previous increases in the program have not had any significant benefit.

That’s it. Good luck!