I interpreted that as meaning that he was not able to do that, rather than just being unwilling.
Which was probably exactly what he intended. Either Obama didn't know the law allowed a pardon before a conviction, which I find very hard to believe, or he intended to say he wouldn't while giving the impression that he couldn't. Technically correct (the best kind of correct), but rather sleazy. Then again, he did study law...
I'm an ex-H1B, and I concur. Heck, I'm sure if this were in place when they hired me, I'd actually get a better offer, too (since it would raise the baseline).
Look, if you need talent that bad, why aren't you willing to pay accordingly for it? Supply and demand and all that. $100k isn't even all that much for the industry.
As of next Tuesday, C will be flushed in favor of COBOL. Please update your programs.