Name One State That Borders Mexico
The Headline: Woman, 101, to become citizen with help of 69-year-old document (CNN) — Eulalia Garcia Maturey has outlived two husbands, her two children and decades of bygone immigration laws. At 101, Maturey will become a citizen on the 101st anniversary of her crossing into the United States from Mexico. The naturalization ceremony will take place Tuesday afternoon in a federal courtroom in Brownsville, Texas, according to the Department of Homeland Security's Citizenship and Immigration Services. Maturey described the feeling of becoming a citizen with one word: "Libre," Spanish for "free." And then in a feisty Spanish voice that makes it hard to believe she's only 4-foot-7, she explained why becoming a citizen at this late stage of her life is so important. "I want to spend the rest of my days in this life living legally (in the USA)," Maturey told CNN this week. "I was raised here, and I want to die here." Just before the start of World War II, Maturey received a "Certificate of Lawful Entry" card from the government issued to her on April 4, 1941. She never imagined that little document would make it possible for her to become a citizen. She figured it came with an expiration date. For decades, Maturey didn't really know what her legal status was in the United States. She feared asking too many questions might get her deported. She crossed the border routinely to visit family in Mexico. Border agents rarely asked for any documentation and when they did, she simply called herself a citizen.
The Thinking: Great story right? I hate to rain on anyone's parade, but just in case there is anyone out there who thinks it is okay to pass themselves off as a citizen in order to cross the border you need to be aware of the potential punishment:
The Law: Aliens who made a misrepresentation to procure a visa, entry, or other immigration benefit, including false claims to citizenship, INA 212(a)(6)(C) are inadmissible to the United States . There is a waiver available under INA 212(i) unless a false citizenship claim is involved. Also, there is a narrow exception to the grounds of removal for false claims to U.S. citizenship and unlawful voting, which provides that a person will not be statutorily barred from establishing good moral character even if he voted unlawfully or made a false claim to United States citizenship if: (1) each natural or adoptive parent is or was a United States citizen; (2) the applicant permanently resided in the U.S. prior to 16; and (3) s/he reasonably believed at the time of such statement, claim, or violation that s/he was a United States citizen. Here, in the case of our centenarian hero, it would not appear that she would qualify for the exception. The USCIS was understandably kind to her, can you imagine the outrage if they tried to revoke her permanent residence and deport her?
The Answer: California, Arizona, New Mexico, Texas