“Cherokee Nation is not this benevolent humanitarian actor. They make most of their money with alcohol and gambling.”
“It’s been f***ed up, but it’s been a boom for my business.”
During conversations with an undercover Veritas journalist, former Biden transition team official, Andrew Lorenzen-Strait, tells of his legacy in the immigration space. He confesses his role is described by critics as a “corrupt bargain.” Lorenzen-Strait explains how he brokered a $2 billion-dollar contract between the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and Cherokee Federal, a tribal-owned federal contractor arm of the Cherokee Nation, to manage post-relief migrant care and the relocation of unaccompanied migrant children despite Cherokee Federal having no previous experience with migrant care.
Mr. Lorenzen-Strait, a principal of Deep Water Associates, celebrates brokering the second largest HHS award in history, helping facilitate a change in Cherokee Federal’s focus from “alcohol and gambling” to “caring for 80,000 kids.” Lorenzen-Strait was previously the subject of a Congressional investigation by House and Senate Republicans, as well as federal investigations by the Department of Homeland Security Office of Inspector General, due to his role in brokering multiple deals with the Biden administration after leaving the transition team. Amid these investigations, he resigned as senior director for migrant services and federal affairs at Endeavors, a non-governmental organization (NGO).
Veritas’ HHS Whistleblower, Tara Rodas, joined us to share her expertise working with Endeavors. Incidentally, Endeavors was the entity which served as a federal contractor at the Pomona Fairplex Emergency Intake Site in California. Rodas was deployed there as a volunteer of Operation Artemis to help the HHS Office of Refugee Resettlement reunite unaccompanied migrant children with sponsors in the U.S. She comments that Mr. Lorenzen-Strait admits, while they are not experts in the field, they are somehow able to “go around regular contracting rules to give a contract in an emergency to people who were not experts in the job they were supposed to be doing.” Rodas added, “[t]hat is stunning and absolutely appalling. It is still stunning to me that people believe kids are commodities.”
The amount of federal money awarded to the contractors and their staff is startling. According to Rodas, for example, one Cherokee Federal executive, Dan Guinan, was paid over $51,000. An emergency intake site is funded in six-month periods. This specific contract between Cherokee Federal and the government was over $600M for that brief period. The contracts and executive salaries are publicly available at www.usaspending.gov. Project Veritas is continuing to investigate these organizations. This story is not over! Stay tuned.
STATEMENT FROM VERITAS CEO, HANNAH GILES:
Project Veritas has shed light on the vast network of federally funded immigration contracts that use billions of taxpayer dollars to manage this nation’s border crisis. Our journalists caught former Biden Transition Official, Andrew Lorenzen-Strait, walking us through these “corrupt bargain” deals that have a direct impact on unaccompanied minors.
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