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2016 ELECTION DAY

Silicon Valley Had This Response to a Trump Presidency

A pall hung over Silicon Valley today as the realization sunk in that Donald Trump — who has a contentious relationship with the tech community — will be the next President of the United States.

Just how much was Trump reviled? For every $1 the tech community donated to Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton received $60.

Image:
Two women look at their cell phones in front of a portrait of U.S. President-elect Donald Trump in Moscow. Alexander Zemlianichenko / AP

Related: Why the Next President Could Benefit From Some Tech Chops

"The tech community is a bit on edge," Patrick Moorhead, principal analyst at Moor Insights & Strategy told NBC News.

Privacy, hacking, visas for highly skilled foreign workers, net neutrality, and the growing gig economy are some of the most pressing tech-related issues that have been addressed this election cycle.

There are a limited number of H-1B visas offered each year, allowing highly skilled workers — many of whom work in technical fields — to enter the United States.

"I think Trump and tech are aligned on the need for increased innovation as it's an economic driver, but aren't currently aligned at all on H1-B visas, which are core to the U.S. tech agenda," Moorhead said.

During the Republican debate in March, Trump said the visas are "something that I frankly use and I shouldn't be allowed to use it. We shouldn't have it. Very, very bad for workers. And second of all, I think it's very important to say, well, I'm a businessman and I have to do what I have to do."

"It's very bad for business in terms of — and it's very bad for our workers and it's unfair for our workers. And we should end it," he clarified.

The sometimes tense and complicated relationship between Silicon Valley and the government was thrust into the spotlight in February when Tim Cook, CEO of Apple, refused to help authorities find a way to unlock the iPhone used by one of the San Bernadino shooters.

Cook said in a letter that what the FBI was essentially demanding was for Apple to build a new operating system that could be installed on an iPhone. No such thing exists, but Cook said if it did, there would be no way to guarantee it would only be used for investigations, potentially jeopardizing the privacy of millions of Americans.

Related: Silicon Valley Donated 60 Times More to Clinton Than to Trump

At the time, Trump called for a boycott of Apple until the iPhone maker cooperated with authorities. (Apple didn't and the FBI said they found a way with outside help.)

Trump has also called for Apple "and all of these great companies" to make their products in the United States.

"Trump would like to force them to do it, and I don't believe you can do this by force. You should try to economically incentivize it," Ivan Feinseth, chief investment officer at Tigress Financial Partners, told NBC News.

At the realization of four years of a Trump presidency, Silicon Valley leaders expressed their sorrow but said they're ready to get back to work.

Sam Altman, president of start-up incubator Y Combinator, defended Trump's most high-profile surrogate in Silicon Valley, billionaire Peter Thiel, after some called for YC to sever ties with him over his Trump support.

On Tuesday night, Altman couldn't hide his disappointment at the result. "Tonight we cry, we despair, and we fear. Tomorrow we get back to work trying to build the world we want," he wrote.

But others struck a more measured, and hopeful tone. Jeff Bezos, Amazon's CEO and the owner of the Washington Post, congratulated Trump Thursday and echoed Hillary Clinton's call for an "open mind."

"I for one give him my most open mind and wish him great success in his service to the country," Bezos wrote.

The Washington Post was a frequent target of Trump's criticism during his campaign. In June, he revoked the newspaper's press credentials calling the media outlet "phony" and "dishonest."