Stephen Miller's Plan Is Coming to Fruition
Over the weekend, both The New York Times and the Washington Post ran lengthy profiles of Stephen Miller, the chief button man behind the murder of America's image in the world. Some of the passages, particularly in the Post, were unsurprisingly horrifying.
Barely a decade removed from college, Miller is at the seat of power. His authority has grown in recent months as he engineered a leadership purge at the Department of Homeland Security, removing or reassigning the head of every immigration-related agency in a span of just seven weeks. And his long-sought policy goals are reaching fruition. On Monday, Miller secured tighter immigration rules that can disqualify green-card applicants if they are poor or deemed likely to use public assistance, cutting off a pathway to U.S. citizenship for those immigrants who could become a burden on taxpayers, or “public charges.”
Miller’s horizon extends beyond one or even two presidential terms. He views the public charge rule as vital to his goal of reducing immigration, and he has told colleagues it will have “socially transformative effects” on American society. “Immigration is an issue that affects all others,” Miller said, speaking in structured paragraphs. “Immigration affects our health-care system. Immigration affects our education system. Immigration affects our public safety, it affects our national security, it affects our economy and our financial system. It touches upon everything, but the goal is to create an immigration system that enhances the vibrancy, the unity, the togetherness and the strength of our society.”
This is a man capable of anything.
From this, of course, come the policy decisions that have tagged Adam Serwer's epigram— The Cruelty Is The Point— to this administration like the carving on a tombstone. And CNBC brings us its latest manifestation: Get sick and die in your cages. We don't care.
“In general, due to the short-term nature of CBP holding and the complexities of operating vaccination programs, neither CBP nor its medical contractors administer vaccinations to those in our custody,” a Customs and Border Protection spokeswoman said in an emailed statement. At least three children who were held in detention centers after crossing into the U.S. from Mexico have died in recent months, in part, from the flu, according to a letter to Reps. Rosa DeLauro, D-Conn., and Lucille Roybal-Allard, D-Calif., from several doctors urging Congress to investigate health conditions at the centers.
The U.S. had previously gone almost a decade without any children dying while under U.S. immigration custody.
“I can tell you from personal experience that child deaths are rare events,” Harvard pediatrics professor Dr. Jonathan Winickoff said in an email. Winickoff, who is also the director of pediatric research for Harvard’s Tobacco Research and Treatment Center, signed on to the Aug. 1 letter with forensic pathologist Judy Melinek and Johns Hopkins public health professors Dr. Joshua Sharfstein and Dr. Paul Spiegel.
They said the U.S. death rate in children from the flu is about one in 600,000. So far, three children have died out of 200,000 people held at detention facilities along the border, they wrote. “When I learned that multiple children had died in detention from potentially preventable causes, it truly disturbed me,” Winickoff said. “The country needs urgent answers to that question so that children stop dying in detention.
They're supposed to die in detention, Doctor. That's the damn plan.