CNN recently interviewed immigration attorney Anibal Romero for their investigation into undocumented immigrants at the Trump Organization. Watch Anibal Romero discuss immigration law on CNN and read the transcript below:
CNN: So the president was ranting big time but about illegal immigration last night and we expected that, but while he was ranting about the brown menace and how you have to be careful about the migrants coming up, I call it the brown menace. That’s what I think he’s building with this farcical crisis. Two people were watching him in the gallery. He may have recognize them because they used to work for him and they’re not in this country legally. The man who represents them, we brought them here once before the story needs updating. It is expanded in shocking ways.
Last night, the president was pushing his immigration agenda up big time and he made a point of drawing on social divides. Listen to this because it’s relevant. “Wealthy politicians and donors push for open borders while living their lives behind walls and gates and guards. Meanwhile, working class Americans are left to pay the price for mass illegal immigration.”
Now. Obviously the president is the best protected person in the country and he’s certainly very wealthy. That’s all fine. That’s not the hypocrisy. The hypocrisy comes in here. He’s part of the problem when it comes to immigration as he sees it because he hires illegal workers not once four years, not one place. Many at least the golf clubs, at least five of them have hired undocumented workers. Now, many of them are being purged from his properties because of the reports that have surfaced and Trump officials have had a hand in their hiring. That’s a key component. How do I know: Anibal Romero. And I’ve been watching the reporting and reading it. He represents over two dozen of the undocumented workers who are recently pushed out. You saw him here a few months ago on primetime. He’s back now.
They come to you and say, look, I’m undocumented. All right, but they knew that they hired me. They hired a lot of us. They helped me get papers. They pointed me in the right direction. When I got uncomfortable, I wanted to do something else. They said you leave, you lose. Is that all true?
Anibal Romero: That is what they’re saying. When Victoria Morales spoke to the New York Times back in December, I started receiving anonymous calls from people who claim to work for the Trump Organization in different cities in the United States. I am now up to 25 people. I have spoken to 30, and what they are telling me is that the group is much larger. The golf season ends in November and many of them left for the year. Probably they won’t be hired because many of them and my clients are saying that at least half of the staff at each golf club was undocumented. That’s the situation right now.
CNN: So let’s say they’re completely off base. All right. Have you been able to vet at least those 25 to see if they are in fact undocumented? All that’d be weird thing lie about. And that they do have some form of proof that they worked at a Trump owned or controlled business.
Anibal Romero: Yes. I have seen pay stubs for all 25 clients. And what’s interesting is all of my clients were not paid health benefits and according to them, other workers were paid health benefits, retirement plans. And my question is, why weren’t the undocumented immigrants paid health benefits? Because you’re not entitled. So the only explanation is that they knew.
CNN: So, you’re using it as not, hey, give them health care. That’s a different argument today is that you’re saying it’s proof that they were aware. And so then they start to find out the report starts to come out. What has happened to the workers that you represent?
Anibal Romero: During the government shutdown the Trump organization, according to what my clients were saying, conducting an audit of businesses and the permanent employees. Remember the temporary ones all left, the permanent employees were fired. They were brought into an office and they were asked, are you legal? In some cases they were just informally asked on the golf club, are you legal? And said, well, you have to leave. And what’s interesting is when the Bedminster golf club story came out, one of my clients who works in Hudson Valley, apparently his managers said to him, don’t worry about it. This is limited to the Bedminster. No one’s going to talk about this. Well now this happened in five different golf clubs. We don’t know of others, but we are talking about a large number of people who lost their job. And, that’s why we’ve been asking for a complete and thorough investigation. Review of business records will show that they have hired numerous undocumented immigrants throughout the years.
CNN: We’re just talking golf clubs, right? Obviously there are a lot of buildings with Trump’s name on them, their hotels, et cetera. Some he has control of many, he does not, but you haven’t even looked there yet. It’s just the golf clubs because that’s the community that knows him. And also, let’s be careful about the concern. This ain’t new. You know what I mean? This is what happens all over the country and all kinds of industries. Certainly the service industry, which is where the golf clubs fall under. So that’s not your beef, that people are hiring undocumented workers. That’s part of the economic reality in this country. It’s that the president is demonizing these people. He’s telling people, beware. The brown menace is, I call him. He doesn’t call him that. That’s my characterization of what he’s saying and he’s hiring them at the same time. Is there any way he could not know in your opinion?
Anibal Romero: Look, I don’t know if he personally knew, but what I do know from what my clients are telling me is that supervisors, new managers, new general managers knew, and here’s the difference. It isn’t illegal to work in the United States and we know they’re working their 11 million people here. Many of them have jobs. I would say most of them have jobs.
CNN: They believe eight of 11 million undocumented workers are in the workforce.
Anibal Romero: Right, but what was happening at these golf clubs is that the managers, some of them supervisors were physically assaulting certain clients. I have one client who says he was struck with a metal object. He filed a police report. We have that. I have victory in morale is who complained of years of threats of deportation. I mean, and what she is saying is this train’s dramatically when he became president and the supervisors would listen to him on TV, talk about immigrants.
CNN: Now they have a new problem because the, the smart thing to do, you know, forgive the cynicism would be to deport these people and get them out of here. But it’s complicated now. They could have done that before all of this. But now that there are some early investigations of some of these matters. Yes. So what happens if you deport them?
Anibal Romero: First of all, at this point they are all material witnesses of a major federal crime. A multistate conspiracy and any attempt to remove them from the United States is obstruction of justice. And that’s why we travel to Washington. We spoke to members of the Senate members. We were there last night, but we also traveled last week to Washington. I believe that members of the house are circulating a letter, I believe Senator Menendez from New Jersey is also is asking for protection for these workers.
CNN: Is there any official investigation yet?
Anibal Romero: I’m not going to discuss that.
Immigration Attorney Anibal Romero and The Romero Firm can help you and your family navigate through the complex immigration process, guiding your path toward the final goal of living in the United States lawfully. Schedule a consultation with Anibal Romero or a member of his legal team today: