California Just Appointed First Illegal Immigrant to State Office

California Just Appointed First Illegal Immigrant to State Office

Last week, the Justice Department sued California for allegedly violating the Constitution with "sanctuary" policies that protect undocumented immigrants.

Lizbeth Mateo, 33, was appointed to a committee that advises the California Student Aid Commission, even though it is illegal to hire an undocumented immigrant.

Born in Mexico, Mateo arrived in the United States and moved to California with her parents when she was 14 years old. All are still illegal and living in the US according to the Sacramento Bee.

The decision to appoint Mateo to a statewide post came just a day after Trump visited California for the first time as president, taking a trip to San Diego to see prototypes of the border wall he plans to build between the US and Mexico.

De Leon's office said Mateo, 33, graduated from Santa Clara University Law School in 2016 and passed the California bar just previous year.

Senate President Pro Tem Kevin de Leon framed the decision as a rebuke of President Donald Trump's immigration policies.

Lizbeth Mateo, a Los Angeles lawyer, was appointed to the Student Opportunity and Access Program Project Grant Advisory Committee, which helps low-income students attend college, earlier this week. In 2016, Gov. Jerry Brown appointed to the California State University Board of Trustees a recipient of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, which gives protection from deportation to immigrants who were brought to the USA illegally as children.

Trump visited California on Wednesday to see prototypes of the border wall that he has pledged to build to reduce illegal immigration. She's in the country illegally.

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Some in the California legal community have been critical of her practicing California law as an undocumented immigrant.

Mateo has a long history of fighting for immigrant rights and in 2010 risked deportation in an effort to demand the passing of the Dream Act.

A private company can still be fined by federal authorities for employing an illegal immigrant.

Assemblyman Travis Allen, a Republican from Huntington Beach, criticized the appointment.

California law says that someone is incapable of holding a "civil office" if they are not a citizen at the time of their appointment.

"Ms. Mateo is a courageous, determined and intelligent young woman who at great personal risk has dedicated herself to fight for those seeking their rightful place in this country", he said in a statement.

Citing the Oakland-based EdSource data, de Leon's office said an estimated 72,300 undocumented students are enrolled in California's public colleges and universities.

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