Getting a temporary U.S. work visa was a lot easier this year because fewer foreigners were trying. In 2007 it took two days for the government to receive enough applications to fill the quota of 65,000 regular H-1B visa permits for foreign skilled workers; in 2008 it took one. But this year? As of late November nearly eight months after the government started accepting applications the number of petitions filed was still more than 6,000 shy of the cap, according to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services. Though the number and pace of applications have fluctuated over the years, analysts said that in addition to highlighting the soft economy the weak demand this time was partly a result of a provision of the stimulus that made it tougher for firms that took federal bailout money to hire workers on H-1B visas. A Department of Labor spokesman said the agency does not speculate on the factors affecting demand for foreign-labor programs.