First Lady Melania Trump was able to grant her parents U.S. citizenship by sponsoring them herself.
That’s good news for Viktor and Amalija Knavs, who raised Melania in Slovenia where they are from.
What’s odd about the whole ordeal is that the process they used for their green cards is one that President Trump himself has tried to repeal, according to CNN. Trump says people coming into the states this way is harmful to the United States.
Why then did Melania grant them citizenship this way? As of now the first lady’s office is declining any comment on the matter.
Trump has frequently stated that “chain migration,” which is what Melania’s parents are doing, should be changed to a “merit-based system,” which he argues will be better for the country as a whole. Trump says that chain migration has taken away jobs from blue collar workers and created national security concerns.
An attorney for the family, Michael Wildes, said that Melania’s parents received no special treatment in the process, even though they frequently are seeing flying on Air Force One with the Trump family on their weekly vacations to Mar-a-Lago or Bedminster, New Jersey.
“The application, the process, the interview was no different than anybody else’s, other than the security arrangements to [the] facility today,” he said. “This is an example of it going right. They’re very excited.”
An investigation by the Washington Post didn’t reveal anything illegal per say (they didn’t have enough evidence to look at) but one interesting bit they found was that Viktor Knavs residence was listed in public records that he lived at Mar-a-Lago, Trump’s private club. Not a bad residence to have on your application when applying.
Still – given all this – the White House is telling reporters that favoritism didn’t play a role.