Harry Reid Accused of Influencing Immigration Officials to Benefit Son's Clients

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) may have influenced immigration officials to benefit visa seekers who were clients of his son, a lawyer, and unfairly benefited major donors to Democrats.

Cause of Action, a nonpartisan watchdog group, filed a complaint with the U.S. Senate Select Committee on Rules alleging that Reid, in January of 2013, contacted Alejandro Mayorkas, then-director of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, on behalf of his son’s clients who were seeking green cards. Some of those clients reportedly may have been engaging in “suspicious financial activity.” 

According to Watchdog, Mayorkas was a direct beneficiary of Reid’s use of the nuclear option when he was confirmed by the Senate, without Republican votes, to be the Deputy Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security.

“Despite the fact that these applications were ineligible for appeal, Sen. Reid’s efforts to lobby USCIS resulted in the reconsideration and approval of these applications, as well as the subsequent securing of millions of dollars in foreign and domestic funds for the (Las Vegas) SLS Hotel & Casino and American Dream Fund EB-5 Regional Center – both of which are major contributors to the Democratic Party,” Cause of Action Executive Director Daniel Epstein wrote.

Mayorkas has been under fire before for giving favorable treatment to EB-5 visa seekers for GreenTech and Gulf Coast Management and is still under investigation by the Department of Homeland Security for potentially putting the country’s security at risk by doing so. Terry McAuliffe, now Virginia’s governor, once headed GreenTech, and Hillary Clinton’s brother, Anthony Rodham, heads Gulf Coast Management. The EB-5 program “enables foreign nationals to receive green cards in exchange for $500,000 to $1 million investments in participating U.S. companies.”

As Breitbart News has extensively reported, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is also independently investigating GreenTech Automotive in part over its EB-5 visa program. Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-IA) released emails that showed the Department of Homeland Security “absolutely gave special treatment” to green card applicants associated with the EB-5 program for GreenTech Automotive at the time that Mayorkas headed the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.

On September 1, 2011, Mayorkas, as the New York Times reported, “reversed a ruling made by career DHS officials that had blocked EB-5 investments into GreenTech Automotive.” That ruling allowed “an additional $25 million from 50 Chinese nationals” seeking green cards to go to GreenTech Automotive.

Cause of Action’s letter was directed to Senate Ethics Committee Chair Barbara Boxer (D-CA) and Vice Chair Johnny Isakson (R-GA).


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