Some additional reporting support’s Cheryl’s point downstairs that Trump is flailing, specifically on immigration. According to NBC News, it was Nielsen’s refusal to reinstate the family separation policy that led to her ouster:
President Donald Trump has for months urged his administration to reinstate large-scale separation of migrant families crossing the border, according to three U.S. officials with knowledge of meetings at the White House.
Trump’s outgoing Homeland Security secretary, Kirstjen Nielsen, resisted — setting her at odds with the president.
Trump has been pushing this policy since January, the sources said, when the numbers of undocumented immigrants crossing the border began to rise.
A senior administration official said it seems Trump is convinced that family separation has been the most effective policy at deterring large numbers of asylum-seekers.
The acting secretary, Kevin McAleenan, hasn’t ruled out reinstating the policy, which is why he’s in and Nielsen is out. As for Nielsen, it will really piss me off if the Beltway bozos try to make a martyr of her. I hope Jeffrey Toobin will set the tone:
.@JeffreyToobin calls Trump “the great reputation killer.”
Kirstjen Nielsen “was a reasonably admired bureaucrat. For the rest of her life people will look at her and think, ‘Oh, that’s the woman who put children in cages.’” https://t.co/LSkSsWzjTF pic.twitter.com/rCKeMObkzZ
— Jeffrey Toobin (@JeffreyToobin) April 8, 2019
He said she deserves the lousy reputation she’ll have for the rest of her life, and he’s correct. Nobody made her take that job, implement horrendous policies and lie to defend her shitty boss.
If Nielsen could have done more to circumvent the legal protections asylum-seekers are afforded and/or hide the cruel practices of the agency she led, she would have done so. Trump will likely install another toady who will also fail.
The real problem is that Trump’s own rhetoric created a crisis at the southern border where none existed. People in desperate circumstances hear rumors of a wall going up, remittances (frequently the difference between having food or not) being shut down, etc., and they think, “Now or never.”
The New Yorker has a great three-part piece on factors driving immigration from Guatemala. It’s heartbreaking and infuriating in a thousand ways but well worth a read. The first part of the series is here.
Let’s hope our 2020 contenders are prepared for the coming shitstorm around immigration. Julián Castro was on Pod Save America last week and outlined his vision for a sane approach to immigration, as well as other issues. Even if he’s not the nominee, Castro’s ideas on immigration deserve a wider hearing within the party (and Warren’s on fighting corruption, etc.).
Buckle up, folks. It’s going to get even uglier.