A woman working as a housekeeper at President Trump's golf club in Bedminster, New Jersey, said she was an unauthorized immigrant in bed and ironed the president's clothes. She revealed that she was an unauthorized immigrant in a New York Times interview.
The woman, 45-year-old Victorina Morales, said she came to the United States from Guatemala and worked at the golf club for the last five years.
In an interview with the Washington Post Thursday night at her lawyer's office, Morales said she has not been fired or heard of her employer since the publication of the Times article, in which she claimed to have presented fake pieces of identity when hired at Trump National. Golf Club.
Morales said she had to get to work Friday but that she had no intention of going there, and that she had made the decision to manifest itself due to the mistreatment of her direct supervisor at the golf club, including what she has described three times as a "physical aggression". .
"I'm tired of being humiliated and treated like a stupid person," she said in Spanish during a brief interview. "We are only immigrants who do not have papers."
Immigration and Customs Enforcement, the agency in charge of detaining and evicting immigrants without legal status, did not answer questions about the case.
"We have tens of thousands of employees in our properties and apply very strict hiring practices," Trump Organization spokeswoman Amanda Miller said, without specifically addressing the article on Morales.
"If an employee submits fake documents to try to circumvent the law, they will be immediately fired," said Miller.
Anibal Romero, Morales 'lawyer, has announced his intention to help Morales file an asylum claim after his family in Guatemala has been threatened and Morales' father-in-law hacked to death at a police station. machete attack. Romero said that his client had not been contacted by US immigration authorities nor charged with crimes in the United States.
Romero also said that he was also considering what he called an "action in employment" against the Trump organization for what he described as potential violations of the anti-discrimination laws of from Morales and another client, Sandra Diaz, who was also working at the golf club illegally. .
Trump has built his 2016 presidential campaign around a tough stance against illegal immigration. He called for a wall along the US-Mexico border, massive deportations of undocumented people and the development of E-Verify, the federal government's online tool to check if employees are legally allowed to work.
During the campaign, Trump said his own companies were already using the system – which in most states is voluntary for employers.
"I'm using E-Verify for almost every job," Trump told MSNBC host Chris Matthews at a "public" televised session in March 2016, prior to the announcement. add: "I use E-Verify and I will tell you. , It works."
On Thursday, a search of the federal government's employer database using E-Verify revealed some of Trump's properties. Its golf courses in North Carolina and Doral, Florida, use it, as well as its Mar-a-Lago hotel complex and its hotels in Washington and Chicago.
But a number of other Trump properties, including the Bedminster Golf Club, do not appear in this database of employers using E-Verify.
The Trump organization has not answered questions asking why some of its properties do not appear in the system.
Eight states require that almost all employers use the system: Alabama, Arizona, Georgia, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee and Utah.
In running for president, Trump extolled a national E-Verify mandate.
"We will ensure that E-Verify is used to the fullest extent possible by law and we will work with Congress to strengthen and expand its use throughout the country," he said. declared. a 2016 Arizona speech.
As President, Trump has enrolled E-Verify as one of its immigration priorities and has requested $ 23 million in its proposed budget for 2019 to expand the program to mandatory use at the University of Ottawa. 39, nationally.
But in recent months, he has largely silenced the program, preferring to focus his rhetoric on immigration on migrants at the Mexican border.
To the dismay of some Conservatives, his silence on the issue has loosened the momentum of one of their main political goals.
"The President has shown himself serious enough to end illegal immigration by not removing the jobs' magnet," said Roy Beck, president of NumbersUSA, a group lobbying to cut back on illegal immigration. # 39; immigration. Beck said Trump had "dropped his promise to help American workers" because he had not "put the shoulder behind a mandatory E-Verify bill" .
According to the Times, Morales said Trump's club officials had taken steps to help him evade detection of an undocumented worker.
Another club staff member took her to work, according to the newspaper, because she could not legally obtain a driver's license. And after a problem was discovered with her old phony documents, the Times reported that a club supervisor directed her to an employee who had helped her get new ones.
The story of the Times was posted Thursday afternoon. Marc Lacey, Times National Publisher, wrote on Twitter that Morales had been notified a day earlier that the story would be posted and that she had not gone to work on Thursday at Bedminster.