SAN JOSE (CBS SF) – As Donald Trump prepares to accept the Republican Party nomination for president, more than 140 tech leaders signed onto a letter calling the businessman a “disaster for innovation.”
“We believe in an inclusive country that fosters opportunity, creativity and a level playing field. Donald Trump does not,” Katie Jacobs Stanton, former Twitter Vice President of Global Media, said in the letter posted Thursday.
The executives particularly questioned the Republican’s stances on immigration, his demeanor and his understanding of technology.
“His reckless disregard for our legal and political institutions threatens to upend what attracts companies to start and scale in America. He risks distorting markets, reducing exports, and slowing job creation,” the letter went onto say.
Without mentioning any other candidates by name, the leaders said they want a candidate who “embraces the ideals that built America’s technology industry: freedom of expression, openness to newcomers, equality of opportunity, public investments in research and infrastructure, and respect for the rule of law.”
Among those signing onto the letter were Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak, Twitter co-founder Ev Williams, Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales and venture capitalist Vinod Khosla.
Trump has gained very little support among Silicon Valley executives. Hewlett Packard Enterprise CEO Meg Whitman, a Republican, criticized Trump in March, saying he could spark a recession.
The presumptive Republican nominee has made little headway among Silicon Valley voters. A poll released before the June primary by the Silicon Valley leadership group found Trump only had 20 percent support among voters in Santa Clara County.
Trump’s visit to San Jose in June was met with protests, with several supporters of the Republican being injured when protesters clashed following his rally at the San Jose Convention Center. At least eight protesters were arrested.
Meanwhile, one Silicon Valley billionaire has voiced support for Trump’s candidacy. Peter Thiel, who co-founded PayPal and is part of Facebook’s board of directors, is scheduled to speak at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland next week.