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Should i contact congressman/Senator or no? question for Tara

Should i contact congressman/Senator or no? question for Tara

Old Jul 30th 2002, 9:35 am
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Default Should i contact congressman/Senator or no? question for Tara

hi Tara
thanks for your immediate response for my post titled
"Advice needed urgently! Put on administrative review at Mumbai Consulate ".I respect your views ,so please if you could provide me with some inputs on the below...
I have read at http://k1.exit.com/ where one of messages in response to my debacle read.....
"As for bringing in a Congressman, I think that is a mistake. I know of one AILA expert (heard him lecture at an AILA conference) who said if he gets a call from a prospective client who says they called in a Congressperson first, that he would not touch that case with a 10 foot pole. I've adopted that position myself (since hearing his thoughts about it) and it has served me well. Besides, there is no reason for me to call in a Congressperson as I know the clients case better than any Congressperson could.

Sometimes a time a do-it-yourselfer will tell the Congressperson "self-serving" statements that the Congressperson simply parrots back to the Consul.

At the AILA conferences, I've attended meetings with top staffers at many of the Consulates (and this was before 9/11) and the message is always the same, DONT CALL IN A CONGRESSMAN! It pisses off the Consul and often has a way of hardening the Consul's position against the case.

When a Consul denies a case, they often type up a short, vague paragraph or two concerning the reasons for the denial. When a Congressman then contacts them, they might then write up a few page report with as many facts that they can to justify the denial (which is much harder to overcome). Again, this was told to me by top Consulate staffers and DOS employees at an AILA conference a few years ago. And I'm not saying this happens every time a Congressman is called in, but it does happen.

Most Consul's take the position of, "hey, its "MY" job to interview this person to see if they are eligible to receive the visa, you (the Congressman) have never even met the beneficiary, you (the Congressman) have only been told what the petitioner wanted to tell you, and I "have" interviewed the applicant and can make up my own mind about this... thank you".

But if the Consulate makes a mistake or screws up somehow, sure a Congressman might be able to help a do-it-yourselfer get his or her concerns/or information before the Consul, but a Congressman is not going to be able to get you case put in front of anybody elses, or force the Consul to do their jobs in a way that the Consul does not agree with (in other words, force the Consul to rule in a certain way).


I am really confused now should i keep in touch with the congressman and pursue it in this manner or???? If i do approach the congressman...should i complain to him in the manner in which my case was treated or just politely ask him to follow it up.

thanks again!
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Old Jul 30th 2002, 5:01 pm
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Default Re: Should i contact congressman/Senator or no? question for Tara

i am aware there are conflicting views of contacting your Congressional office, especially if it is BEFORE your interview. Most of this revolves around duplicty of contacts. If you are using a lawyer it should not be done as this creates too many cooks in the broth.

i had asked Mr. Udall, who mentioned that he had no 221(g)'s from India, if he had had any cases that involved age difference, previous Indian divorces, or cases where the Indian family was not aggreable to the marriage. He has not replied. If i knew this, i would certainly suggest to prospective Indian applicants to seek legal assitance in filing the 129 or 130 if the above applied to them.

For as long as i have viewed this and other boards, i have seen that the vast majority of 221(g) administrative reviews come from India, Manilla and Nigeria. No need to comment on what patterns this presents or why. It is conjecure on my part. But most Indian cases, that did not involve a "simple" lack of a "relevant" piece of information involved one of the scenarios as i stated above. Sure there is more fraud at some as opposed to other Embassies. And it sent shivers up me thinking of what the attorney's on the other site are saying.....(ie)


Matthew Udall..."When a Consul denies a case, they often type up a short, vague paragraph or two concerning the reasons for the denial. When a Congressman then contacts them, they might then write up a few page report with as many facts that they can to justify the denial (which is much harder to overcome)."
If this is true than you may be disheartend believing that had you never contacted the Congressional office, you may have gotten off with a "simple" 221(g) instead of administrative review.

Folinskyinla..."It pays to remember that State Department is not under intense criticism these days for denying visas -- they are catching flack, from Congress, for GRANTING visas. You gave them an opportunity to demonstrate to a congressperson just how careful they are being."

And if this is true, it seems to be implying that making an example of a few cases (especially those that have Congressional vewing) will show Congress that indeed we are "doing our job" with more of an eagle eye than ever. What a conundrum.

There was a piece on a site about the psychologyof Embassy's on this site:

http://www.usaimmigrationattorney.co...gyembassy.html

But no use pondering the wisdom at this point of whether or not you should have done it. You did not use an attorney and you have used Congressional assistance, that is water past the bridge now you must go with that current.

As was the circumstances in our case. Even before i knew there were "discussion boards" devoted to helping fiances/spouses, i was aware, thru community involvement, that Congressional offices had immigration liasons. So when i had questions, i presented them to my liason. Seemed logical to me at the time. And there is no going back, what has been done is done. My fiance noted on his file that they opened before questioning him the notation "Congressional".

i understood from the start, as you must, that the Congressional office can have NO say in approval of your case. But for me, getting correspondance thru to Mumbai (either by e-mail or phone or fax) was unfruitful. Whereas, she could get a response. This is the best you Congressional office can do for you. Keep your letters and correspondance with them very polite. And don't expect or ask the impossible from them.

Did your pre-interview letter to the Consulate really say this (as was posted on the other board)
"I did it only to emphasise that we are truely in love with each other and asking the consulate not to punish us for other frauds taking place at their consulate." Where did you get the idea to do this?

Let me stop here to mention. When you are saying " I am really confused now should i keep in touch with the congressman and pursue it in this manner or????" i'm assuming the use of the pronoun "i" means your fiance? Only she has the right to contact Congress. The rest of you question asks " If i do approach the congressman...should i complain to him in the manner in which my case was treated or just politely ask him to follow it up." MOST definately, do not make a big scene of "how badly" you felt you were treated. Remember what the attorney was saying. ( 1) You, as the beneficiary have NO rights (2) Your fiance's rights include the freedom to APPLY (and fall in love) with whomever she chooses. But they decide the rest. Based on THEIR observations. NOT a "far removed" Congressional office. So, yes i would suggest your fiance keep in contact with her Congressional office, and keep the correspondance professional and with no high expectations that they are going to pull out a magic card to "expedite" your administrative review. it just won't happen. You two may be in for a longer, than expected engagement. When you read the link i posted above you will see that that attorney suggested having people wait it out a "bit longer" is a tactic used to separate the "wheat from the shaft". Keep showing them you two are "wheat".

One last thing. i noticed that you asked the attorneys on the other board for their legal assistance. Since you are new here i will tell you this. They are here out of kindness, and do not solicit clients from the discussion boards. They may be willing to point you to a good attorney in your fiances locale though.

Best wishes, and keep the group updated
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