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‘As American as anyone’: Chicago veteran faces deportation after two tours of duty in Afghanistan

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A Chicago veteran is facing and fighting deportation after spending time in prison for drug charges, the Chicago Tribune reported. Miguel Perez Jr., 38, was born in Mexico and is presently a legal permanent resident of the U.S. He served two tours in Afghanistan.

Perez, who has lived in the U.S. for the last 30 years now faces possible deportation to Mexico over a felony drug conviction, but his case is not isolated. Experts who have tracked veteran deportations put the exact number in the thousands, though the Department of Homeland Security claims to not keep count, according to PBS News Hour. However, the American Civil Liberties Union estimates that number is in the hundreds.

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Perez thought that upon taking an oath to serve in the military, that he also became a U.S. citizen; however, he learned that was not the case upon receiving a summons for immigration court after his release from a state prison.

He had served seven years in prison on drug charges “for handing over a bag of cocaine to an undercover police officer,” the Tribune reports. Perez has since been in the custody of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and awaits deportation in a Wisconsin immigration detention center.

An immigration judge will determine on Monday whether Perez will be deported or not. According to numbers from the Tribune, there are nearly 18,700 legal permanent residents in the armed forces, and over 109,000 service people became citizens by the end of 2015.

In a comment on Perez’s case, ICE spokeswoman Gail Montenegro said in a statement, “ICE respects the service and sacrifice of those in military service, and is very deliberate in its review of cases involving U.S. military veterans,” adding, “Any action taken by ICE that may result in the removal of an alien with military service must be authorized by the senior leadership in a field office, following an evaluation by local counsel.”

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Perez hasn’t lived in Mexico since he was 8 years old and his attorney, Chris Bergin, argues that returning would put his life in danger. “Being removed to Mexico, where he would be at risk of being killed … being separated from his whole family and the only country he has ever known, seems to be a punishment that does not fit the crime,” said Bergin.

Veterans, including both U.S. citizens and green-card holders will head to Washington on Tuesday to lobby Congress in hopes that Perez will be released. Regarding his own case, Perez says, “The sweat, tears and sometimes blood we shed for this country makes us as American as anyone born here.”

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Trump has figured out how to get taxpayers to renovate one of his golf courses: MSNBC panel

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President Donald Trump has figured out how to have taxpayers pay to renovate his Trump National Doral Miami golf course, according to an analysis by MSNBC's Stephanie Ruhle.

"Before setting himself on fire on Ukraine yesterday, Mick Mulvaney came into the White House briefing room to break to the nation the fact the that the Trump Doral golf resort turns out to be -- in his estimation, organically, just sitting there -- the best possible place to have a G-7 Summit of world leaders," MSNBC's Brian Williams reported. "That was provision number one. There’s no better place that we can find. Number two was, the president will not profit from said G-7."

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Bill Maher reveals plan to ‘bribe’ Trump with one billion dollars — for him to leave office

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The Constitution has two mechanisms to remove President Donald Trump from office prior to his term ending on January 20, 2021: impeachment and the 25th Amendment.

HBO "Real Time" host Bill Maher noted that Trump could also choose to resign.

Maher waved around a $1 million check that he said he would give to Trump to quit.

He said he also knew 1,000 people who would do the same -- which would land Trump over $1 billion.

Maher said even poor people would pawn their wedding rings to add to the pot.

Watch:

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Trump can’t fire Mulvaney because nobody else wants to be his chief of staff: report

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White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney will likely stay on at the White House despite his public confession of a quid pro quo in the Ukraine scandal at the center of the impeachment inquiry, The New York Times reported Friday.

"But Mr. Mulvaney’s job has been anything but normal since the news conference on Thursday at which he seemingly undermined the Trump administration’s strategy for avoiding impeachment by acknowledging that Mr. Trump had sought a quid pro quo for providing Ukraine with American aid," the newspaper reported. "In the chaotic aftermath, the president’s Republican allies are questioning Mr. Mulvaney’s savvy and intelligence even as the Trump campaign is defiantly turning one of his lines from the news conference into a T-shirt."

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