Monday, October 9, 2017

Luther Strange and Jeff Sessions talk tough on immigration, but new evidence suggests they use EB-5 visa program to help put cash in their own pockets

Jeff Sessions and Luther Strange
U.S. Sen. Luther Strange (R-AL) and Trump Attorney General Jeff Sessions talk tough about immigration, but recent reports show they make money from a program that essentially sells visas to wealthy foreigners, mostly Chinese.

Strange's financial stake in the EB-5 visa program came to light via a Sept. 18 article at titled "Luther Strange's disclosure exposes double talk on immigration." State Auditor Jim Zeigler spoke out three days later about the visa scandal surrounding Strange, who lost to Roy Moore in a GOP runoff for a seat in the U.S. Senate. Strange, who was appointed to the seat by former Gov. Robert Bentley, will remain on the job until Moore and Democrat Doug Jones meet in the general election on Dec. 12.

A source tells Legal Schnauzer that Sessions also makes money from the EB-5 program, and it was Sessions' Senate seat that Strange was hoping to fill on a permanent basis. From the article on Strange:

Since going to Washington back in February, Strange has worked hard on earning his immigration stripes. In May, he introduced legislation to force sanctuary citizens to pay for the president’s border wall. “They can either follow the law,” Strange said while announcing his bill, “or fund the wall.”

What’s surprising however, is finding out the senator has a personal equity ownership in an EB-5 visa development project — a controversial program in which wealthy foreign nationals can purchase visas.

Established in 1990, the EB-5 Visa program allows real estate developers to sell legal immigration status to wealthy foreign nationals for $500,000, thus allowing the very rich to buy their way into legal status. Under the program, those foreign nationals, their spouses and their unmarried children under 21 years old are able to apply for green cards.

The Web site then exposed a key entry on Strange's required "New Filer Report" of Feb. 8, 2017, showing he owns an “indirect 16.665% ownership” in Sunbelt EB-5 Regional Center, a multi-million dollar Limited Liability Company. It sells visas giving legal status to wealthy foreigners and their families who then by-pass legal immigration requirements.

Strange's duplicity caught the eye of Jim Zeigler, as outlined by Alabama Political Reporter (APR):

“Strange has been talking against illegal immigration in his campaign, but it is only talk,” Zeigler said. “He did not put his money where his mouth is.”

“Luther Strange is making big money off wealthy foreigners, enabling them and their families to come to America, get legal, and compete against American businesses,” Zeigler said. “This is exactly the type of self-serving that we do not need in Washington.”

Jeff Sessions also is involved in the scam, a source tells Legal Schnauzer:

If you start tracking the evil elf, the only immigration program he has ever been for is the EB-5 program, which his political mafia is running. I might add he is behind almost all the bills for the program; it was in his committee,  and Luther Strange is a part owner of the Sunbelt EB-5 Regional Center that sells visas to Chinese and Russians. 
Roy Moore and Mo Brooks told on them, so here is the deal: It was Luther and Jeff that set up Sunbelt EB-5 Regional Center, and  for each visa, they get paid half a million to a million -- plus their lobbyists and lawyers get paid to put it through. And their senate jobs are used to get immigration folks at DHS to do what they want, so they get donations for putting through visa deals. 
I might add they benefit from passing laws that send folks home, and building a wall makes more folks want to pay their half a million to come back. They also make off with the investment money they are given. It is a huge elaborate scam system involving our immigration deal. . . .  The harder they make it to come here, the more they can charge folks to get a visa.

Are Strange and Sessions (and Donald Trump, for that matter) really tough on immigration? Evidence continues to surface that they view immigration as a money-making scheme.


Anonymous said...

A Republican serving his own interests to make cash on public policy? Never saw that one coming.

Anonymous said...

"Luther Strange" and "public servant." You'll never hear those two phrases used in the same sentence.

Anonymous said...

This is a GOP tradition in Alabama. Just think Bob Riley, Mike Hubbard, Roy Moore, Robert Bentley. You get the picture.

Anonymous said...

First, we learn the GOP is in bed with the Russians, and now it's the Chinese.

Imagine how bad it would be if Sessions and Strange weren't such patriots.

Captain Renault said...

没有这么大的惊喜,找到大官员自己有利可图的内部游戏! 这些官员怎么能努力把食物放在家里呢?

legalschnauzer said...

Captain R --

I'm fluent in Chinese, of course -- that's required of our LS staff -- but some of our readers might have a little problem making this out. I don't think Mandarin is spoken out in Mulga, AL, except to order moo goo gai pan. In fact, I'm not sure English is spoken out in Mulga, AL. Can you help us with translation?

Anonymous said...

Maybe this is a way for Luther to keep Jessica Garrison in the lifestyle to which she has grown accustomed.

Anonymous said...

I thought Republicans were supposed to be anti-communists. Sure doesn't look that way anymore.

Anonymous said...

Luther's big concern must be that Jessica keeps her mouth shut.

Anonymous said...

Lutha's political career is ovah, so maybe he doesn't need to worry about whether Jessica keeps her mouth shut.

e.a.f. said...

It enables the rich to get richer and bring more rich people into the U.S.A. However, they aren't that interested in politics or much else besides settling their families in the U.S.A. while returning to China to work. Canada had a similar program. What we saw was families coming here, purchasing houses, driving up the cost of real estate so that a "family home" in Vancouver, B.C. Canada will cost you at least $2M. That is not a new house, but an old one, what we refer to as bull dozer bait. In the burbs its not much different. with it came the money laundering through our casinos. The fathers usually returned to China to work and the families stayed here. Given the fathers declared their income in China, they had little income in Canada. this resulted in their families being able to take advantage of our social safety net. Yes, in two very affluent areas in Greater Vancouver the income is the same as the most economically deprived postal code in Canada. They return to Canada to have their children, educate their kids, when they need hospital care, and when its time to collect their pensions at age 65 from the Canadian government.

Now let me be clear I am not anti immigration and we don't have this problem with working/middle class immigrants, refugees, whatever. its just the wealthy from mainland, Communist China. Canada has always been a country of immigrants and refugees. Following the fall of Vietnam, Canada went in the refugee camps and accepted refugees just on what they told the officers. We in the end gained 100K new citizens. Last year Canada accepted 25k Syrian refugees. When the Hungarian revolution took place, Canada was able to gain the entire foresty dept. of their major university. Growing up in B.C. back in the 1950's we had 25k people from Holland. We gained many new citizens from India and as a result, we did very well.

What Luther and Sessions are bringing to the U.S.A. are people from Communist China. Under their government rule, no one leaves the country without approval of that Communist Government. So really what are they bringing to the U.S.A. We in British Columbia, Canada know and its not good.

The law which allows Sessions and Strange to assist the very wealth people coming from Communist China was not "active" until Trump re activated it and his son in law's sister was selling condos in Communist China.

If you think this won't impact your communities, trust me it does. In Richmond, B.C. a suburb of Vancouver, it is indeed difficult to find English signs. They're all in Mandarin. Not even Cantonese, which early pioneers from China spoke. Not French our official other language. City officials can't even persuade store/company owners to post English, they don't care. Some strata developments only hold meetings in Mandarin. you gotta problem with that, move.

The U.S.A. might want to remember Communist China has 35 million, millionaires and their first allegiance is to the communist government of China, not the U.S.A., regardless of what people are told.

the moo goo gai pan is most likely a Cantonese dish. don't know what the captain is saying and he didn't say it was in mandarin or Cantonese.

The people Session and Strange are enabling to come into the U.S.A. will not be donating to their campaigns unless they can do something for them and trust me, they will want something.

anon said... = Not so much surprise to find big ones own profitable internal game! How can these officials try to put food at home?

Apparently a little lossy due to the free online translation.

legalschnauzer said...

e.a.f. --

Thanks so much for one of the most fascinating and informative comments in the history of Legal Schnauzer. Comments like this make my day, and they are one of the things I find most rewarding about producing this blog.

e.a.f. has taken a story about actions from two Alabama politicians in the "Lower 48" and shown the impact a similar program already has had in Canada. This is truly educational stuff and shows just how smart many of our readers are. It's an honor to have readers like e.a.f. here.

The impact on cost of housing in Vancouver, plus the prevalence of Mandarin signage in some areas . . . those are things that had never occurred to me -- and I bet they are eye-openers for many readers.

You can bet they never occurred to Luther Strange and Jeff Sessions, and they don't care; they are just two opportunists trying to line their own pockets.

Perhaps these games all will go up in smoke once Strange is out of office and Sessions gets indicted. Several brush fires could go big and get Strange indicted, too -- if we're lucky.

Again, thanks for a great comment, e.a.f.

Anonymous said...

I am younger than the McCarthy era, but am I the only person thinking that we need a little of that McCarthy era paranoia that was so prevalent in the 50s and 60s?

legalschnauzer said...

@8:56 --

Are you referring to scrutiny of Trump and his ties to Russia? If so, I would agree -- except I don't think that's paranoia; there is substantial evidence to indicate much of that is real. I'm not an expert on the McCarthy era, but my understanding is that he was a bomb thrower, who did major damage to innocent people. If there is anything innocent about Donald Trump, I'm not aware of it.

Anonymous said...

@8:56 here: Yes, much harm came to innocent Americans back then, but today we could use a little of that paranoia like JE Hoover had---he saw Reds everywhere. Today, so much crap from Russia and China--communism ain't what it used to be. Now they are all about the money. Buying visas from American companies that facilitate the deals, and the new American establishment just holds their arms wide open and welcomes the millionaires.

e.a.f. said...

Just because you're paranoid doesn't mean it isn't happening to you.