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Sat Feb 22, 2020, 01:19 PM



by Jonathan Blitzer
February 21, 2020


. . .Miller had ideas of his own. In 2013, during the unaccompanied-minors crisis, an official at ice had suggested separating parents and children once they reached the border, in the hope of deterring other families from travelling north. The White House had dismissed the proposal as inhumane, but Miller took it up again. “He was obsessed with the idea of consequences,” a top D.H.S. official who worked with Miller at the time told me. “He’d always say to us, ‘They are breaking the law, and the only way we’ll change that is if there’s a consequence.’ ” The consequences were specific. The official said, “Miller made clear to us that, if you start to treat children badly enough, you’ll be able to convince other parents to stop trying to come with theirs.” Miller had already led a meeting at the White House to pressure D.O.J. officials to prosecute border crossers as criminals. (Doing so was the basis for separating families: while parents faced criminal charges, their children were treated as unaccompanied minors.) In April, he and Hamilton wrote a Presidential memorandum directing agencies to end catch and release; they also composed a letter, signed by Attorney General Sessions, articulating a policy, called zero tolerance, for prosecuting all adults who were arrested by D.H.S. for illegal entry.

Sessions announced the new policy at a gathering of law-enforcement officials in Arizona, saying that if parents were caught “smuggling” their children into the country they’d be separated from them and treated as criminals. The head of Customs and Border Protection, Kevin McAleenan, and the head of ice, Tom Homan, signed off on zero tolerance, as did Nielsen. Miller, however, forced the policy into action before D.H.S. was ready to implement it. When border agents began separating families, the Administration hadn’t yet made plans to reunite them, a direct result of “the pressure he brought to bear,” a top D.H.S. official said. By late June, more than twenty-five hundred children, including a hundred and two under the age of five, had been separated from their parents, many of whom didn’t know where the government had taken them. In an ice detention center in El Paso, groups of separated mothers secretly exchanged information in the cafeteria to compile lists of their missing children and smuggle out requests to local lawyers for help.

Hundreds of parents were deported without their children. From Central America, they called intermittently functioning U.S. hotlines, set up by the Department of Health and Human Services, in an effort to locate them.

Miller forcefully defended family separation, telling the Times that voters would support the White House “90-10.” In fact, the public was outraged, especially after a recording of small children crying for their parents at a Texas detention center was leaked to ProPublica. A Border Patrol agent could be heard saying derisively, “Here we have an orchestra.” The policy dominated television news, and Ivanka and Melania Trump lobbied the President to end it. Some inside the Administration thought that the policy was justified, but that its execution had been poor. Several officials blamed Miller. “How many things have fallen because of bad messaging?” a D.H.S. agency head said to me. “Isn’t Miller supposed to be the master of messaging?” On June 18th, officials at the White House decided to explain the Administration’s position to the public in a press conference. Sarah Huckabee Sanders, the President’s chief spokesperson, pressured Nielsen to deliver the briefing, as a means of shielding the White House from blame. Nielsen’s advisers were uniformly opposed. “She would become the face of the policy,” one of them told me. But, according to an official who was present for the conversation, Sanders told Nielsen, “The President is getting killed on this, and it’s your department. How are you not going to go out there?”

At the press conference, Nielsen alternated between denying that the government had created a policy to separate children from their parents and defending zero tolerance as a necessary measure for enforcing immigration laws. Forty-eight hours later, Trump ended the separation policy, blaming Nielsen for his political defeat. “I have no idea how Miller managed to escape this one,” the official told me. “He knows just how and when to disappear.”

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swag Feb 22 OP
live love laugh Feb 22 #1

Response to swag (Original post)

Sat Feb 22, 2020, 10:31 PM

1. The fact that anybody is manipulated by Miller is bizarre.

The “off” appearance of the most detestable of their ilk (think dead eyed Matt Gaetz) is a giveaway of their derangement. Only a fool would be brainwashed by fools.

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