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GOPisForMe Meeting Touches On Immigration Laws

Immigration attorney Garry Davis, of Dallas, talks to guests at Saturday’s GOPisForMe meeting held at the Corsicana Public Library.
As Published on Gumbo Buster Banner
Kris Smith
• Tuesday, April 17, 2012

During Saturday’s Hispanic Republican Club of Navarro County’s meeting, Waco-based GOP is For Me Director Duke Machado invited Garry Davis, Immigration attorney from Dallas, to speak to members regarding their immigration status and papers. Davis stated, “Many people ask me why I do this. To be honest with you, when it comes to your personal situation, I think nothing is more important than family. I feel like my job, is to find a way through the law, legally to keep families together. Everyone loses in a divorce. When we are able to keep a family together (with immigration laws), everyone wins. ”

Discussing the many ways an immigrant may become legally documented in the United States, Davis gave many attendees peace of mind and assurances that there are attorneys who can be trusted. Davis stated, “One way that people can potentially legalize their status. This is what some people call the ‘green card through time’. If you have been in the country for more than ten years and have a spouse or a child who is a United States citizen and have no criminal record during that time, you may be able to ask an Immigration Judge for permanent residency. Knowing that is an option, gives some people a tremendous peace of mind.”

Davis also discussed popular myths about immigration documentation. “What do you get when you marry someone who is a legal citizen of the United States?” He responded, “Nothing. You get nothing for being married to a United States citizen.” Also, United States law states that if you reside illegally in the US for one year, and you are deported, you cannot reenter the US for ten years. Davis said, “If you are married to a US citizen, there ought to be a way here in the United States without having to leave your family.”

Navarro County Sheriff’s Office Captain Elmer Tanner was also invited to discuss the rights of immigrants when they are encountered by law enforcement in Navarro County. Tanner stated, “There is currently no law on the books about a person being here in Texas or in Navarro County that does not have a legal status. That means that when you are encountered by a Sheriff’s deputy, there is no criminal law that will make you be arrested for not having a legal status. That being said, if you break the law, that is a whole different story.” Tanner continued, “Racial profiling is illegal. That means that as a patrol officer or an officer of the law in any capacity, I cannot drive down the street and see you driving down the street, and think ‘oh that person may not be a legal citizen’. If I do that, that’s illegal. We now have to keep records and statistics that has to be turned into the state to show that is not happening.”

“Speaking on behalf of two separate agencies, The Corsicana Police Department have policies and procedures that do not necessarily coincide with the Navarro County Sheriff’s Office. I am speaking on behalf of the Navarro County Sheriff’s Office,” stated Tanner.
“Up until a year ago, the Sheriff’s Office would not send your fingerprints to the state for any traffic related offense. We now have a computerized system in the Sheriff’s Office, which means within fifteen minutes we will get a return if you give false information. Also, we do not have a policy to contact Immigration and Customs for a traffic related arrest,” Tanner continued.

Tanner also warned against the dangers of trusting the wrong people, “There are predators right here in this community who will and have taken advantage of people trying to get their immigration status legalized.”

Duke Machado stated, “GOP is For Me has compiled a list of trusted attorneys to assist in the immigration documentation process.” Visit for more information on this subject.

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