Former Republican Gives $1 Million to Defend Undocumented Immigrants

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Mike Fernandez, a former Republican who left the party because of President Donald Trump, plans to raise millions of dollars for deportation-fighting lawyers.

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On Wednesday, the billionaire announced he would be giving $1 million of his own money to help provide legal counsel for detained undocumented immigrants who don’t have a criminal background. Fernandez, who founded the fundraising group Immigration Partnership and Coalition, hopes to raise at least $5 million more over the next two years.

“Immigrants are key to the fiber and the economic survival of our country,” he told the Miami Herald. “We are hard workers. We clean rooms. We herd cattle. We pick fruits. We care for the elderly. If we were not doing it, nobody would be doing it.”

According to Fernandez, the money will not only help immigrants facing removal from the U.S. but would also be used to educate many of their rights, help them apply for residency or citizenship as well as raise awareness to others of the impact of immigrants in our economy.

“It’s education,” Fernandez said. “It is also letting the federal government know that citizens are upset about it, and that they will have to fight us.”

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The Cuban immigrant admitted he hopes to get A-list celebrities, such as actor Andy Garcia and producer Emilio Estefan, backing the cause.