A New Jersey Democrat has invited a surprising guest to President Trump’s State of the Union address: an illegal immigrant who was fired from the Trump National Golf Club in Bedminster.
Rep. Bonnie Watson Coleman said Wednesday that she extended the invitation to Victorina Morales, a Guatemala-born woman who was fired from the golf property where she worked as a housekeeper for five years.
The woman, who’s an illegal immigrant, has since become an advocate for other illegal immigrants in the country. She recently spoke out in the media about the Trump Organization’s hiring practices.
The congresswoman blasted Trump for touching off the government shutdown over border wall funding – while his businesses allegedly relied on illegal immigrants.
“President Trump justified shutting the government down for 5 weeks by demonizing immigrants as the scourge of the country and the root of our nation’s crime and insecurity,” she said.
“Meanwhile, CEO Trump led a company that has relied extensively on the hard work of undocumented immigrants like my constituent Victorina to keep his resorts clean and his putting greens trimmed. Donald Trump wants to build silly walls to stop the same immigrants that he’s made a career and a fortune from exploiting,” she added.
Morales was one of the illegal immigrants fired from Trump golf properties. She told NPR that the Trump Organization knew she wasn’t legally in the country.
Following the backlash, the Trump Organization pledged to use the E-Verify system to ensure everyone working at the company is legally in the U.S.
“I hope that in his State of the Union address, Donald Trump will finally acknowledge the real face of immigrants in this country — women and children fleeing violence, law-abiding, tax-paying people who would do almost anything to be Americans,” Coleman said.
“And if he can’t, I’ve invited Victorina so that he may look her in her eyes to tell his lies to a familiar face.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report.