SpaceX sues US government, says DOJ’s claims of anti-immigrant hiring practices are unconstitutional
Elon Musk’s SpaceX has reportedly sued the U.S. government, claiming that the government’s case accusing the company of refusing to hire refugees and those having sought asylum violates the U.S. Constitution.
In a lawsuit filed in Texas federal court on Friday, SpaceX says the U.S. Department of Justice administrative judges who typically hear cases concerning employee bias against immigrants are not appropriately appointed. The company also claims that keeping the case out of court denies the giant company its constitutional right to a jury trial, according to Reuters.
The DOJ issued a complaint in late August, suggesting that from 2018 to 2022, SpaceX refused to bring on those who were not U.S. citizens or green card holders. The government agency also claimed that Musk’s space company incorrectly claimed that federal export control laws prevented it from hiring foreign citizens.
However, Musk shot back, saying that the U.S. government was essentially being weaponized for political purposes.
When Musk was questioned about why he did not hire people from outside the company, he said: “I think people are a bit confused about this. Unfortunately, this is not up to us.”
“If you’re working on rocket technology, that’s considered an advanced weapons technology. So, even a normal work visa isn’t sufficient unless you get special permission from the secretary of defense or the secretary of state,” he added.
“This is not a wise policy for the U.S. because there’s so many talented people all around the world that we would love to have work at our company, but unless they can somehow get a green card, we’re legally prevented from hiring anyone.”
In SpaceX’s lawsuit, it said that it has hired hundreds of non-U.S. citizens, per Reuters, but that some of the projects the company is working on have national security implications. As a result, the company could reportedly face significant fines for hiring those who are not from the U.S.
SpaceX went on to claim that the administrative case is not allowed under the Constitution. As a result, SpaceX stated that it would ask the court to block the administrative case from moving forward depending on the result of the lawsuit.
Musk recently made a splash, as it was reported that he would consider charging all users a small monthly fee to have an X account. The development is apparently an effort to mitigate the proliferation of bot accounts on the platform.
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