140 Silicon Valley leaders pen open letter protesting Donald Trump nomination

Technology sector wants "candidate who embraces the ideals that build America's infrastructure"

Published July 15, 2016 12:44PM (EDT)

Donald Trump   (AP/Kevin Hagen)
Donald Trump (AP/Kevin Hagen)

A cadre of over 140 technology sector leaders from Silicon Valley published an open letter decrying "Donald Trump's divisive candidacy" and demanding "a candidate who embraces the ideals that built America's infrastructure."

According to the group, those ideals include "freedom of expression, openness to newcomers, equality of opportunity, public investments in research and infrastructure, and respect for the rule of law" -- in other words, principles that Trump has either spoken out against or character traits he congenitally lacks.

For example, his position(s) on immigration fly in the face of the fact that "40% of Fortune 500 companies were founded by immigrants or their children," whereas they "believe that progressive immigration policies help us attract and retain some of the brightest minds on earth — scientists, entrepreneurs, and creators."

Moreover, these leaders call into question Trump's ability to lead, writing that he "articulates few policies beyond erratic and contradictory pronouncements," and that his seething hatred for government regulation demonstrates a fundamental misunderstanding of the role the federal government has played in expanding the technology.

This is not to say that Silicon Valley is entirely opposed to a Trump presidency. As The New York Times' Mike Isaac noted, "the letter lacked the signatures of some of the highest-profile figures in technology," including Apple, Google, and Facebook -- in fact, Facebook board member Peter Thiel accepted Trump's invitation to speak at the Republican National Convention next week.

By Scott Eric Kaufman

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Donald Trump Elections 2016 Innovation Silicon Valley Technology