Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach, a key member of Donald Trump’s transition team, said the President-elect’s Administration “is considering a registry for immigrants from Muslim countries and the construction of a border wall without congressional approval,” according to POLITICO.
Additionally, McClatchy reports that Kobach is being floated as a possible pick for the next Attorney General. It’s easy to see why Kobach has mostly ignored his job back home for a place in the next Administration: He shares so many of the next President’s extreme views and radical beliefs about the nation’s immigrant and Latino families. He’s also notoriously extreme on other issues, like voting rights and LGBT equality:
- While serving as an advisor to Attorney General John Ashcroft, Kobach also dreamt up the notorious “Special Registration” program that was a massive exercise in government-sponsored racial profiling: “Special Registration was formally deactivated in April 2011, but the effects still linger. Many immigrant families in this country were torn apart by the program’s deportation zeal. With its blunt and byzantine reporting requirements, Special Registration also alienated Muslim communities from law enforcement agencies and the Department of Homeland Security. And while the program is no longer active, it remains in place and can be resurrected at any time.”
- Kobach was the architect of Arizona’s SB1070, the infamous anti-Latino, anti-immigrant “show me your papers” law, which was later ruled mostly unconstitutional by the US Supreme Court. Immediately after the Court’s decision, Kobach filed “an anti-DACA suit on behalf of 10 ICE agents and Mississippi, alleging that they were being harmed by DACA. The case was dismissed in 2015 on the grounds that the plaintiffs lacked the standing to bring the case in the first place.”
- Kobach is the elected official behind one of the most egregious examples of voter suppression, disproportionately harmful to people of color. The ACLU sued in 2014, saying that “around 14 percent of all Kansans who have tried to register to vote since the state’s proof of citizenship law went into effect in 2013 have been stymied”. Kobach suffered a resounding defeat when “a three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia blocked Kansas and two other states from requiring voters to show proof of citizenship if they register to vote using the federal form.”
- In 2014, Kobach moaned that President Barack Obama’s 2014 executive actions on immigration would lead to “socialism” and “ethnic cleansing”.
- Before Mike Pence’s selection, Kobach was endorsed as a Vice-Presidential pick for Trump by the nativist group VDARE. SPLC describes VDARE as a hate group for regularly publishing writing by white nationalists and anti-Semites, and was named after Virginia Dare, the first white child born in the Americas to English settlers.
- Kobach, along with another anti-immigrant ringleader, Mark Krikorian of the Center for Immigration Studies, championed state laws anchored in the concept of “self-deportation” (attempting to make life for immigrants so miserable they decide to leave the country).
- In 2012, Kobach appeared on a Conservative Political Action Committee (CPAC) immigration panel with Robert Vandervoort, the white nationalist leader of a group that opposes bilingual ballots and bilingual education.
- Last year, Kobach was a featured speaker at a conference organized by white nationalists. The Writers’ Workshop “is the brainchild of white nationalist and founder of the organized anti-immigrant movement, John Tanton”.
- Earlier this year, Kobach was instrumental in the addition of border wall and anti-gay language into the GOP’s platform, writing that the construction of a wall “that must cover the entirety of the southern border. Additionally, “the platform committee also adopted a Kobach provision that condemns the U.S. Supreme Court’s 2015 decision to legalize same-sex marriage nationwide, a ruling he called ‘obviously incorrect’”.
- Also earlier this year, Kobach was skewered for giving false information on the Spanish-language version of his website that could have possibly led to disenfranchisement of Latino voters. A simple mistake, we’re sure.
From the start of his campaign, Donald Trump’s mission has been to treat immigrant families as subhuman — it’s no wonder why he’s received glowing endorsements from the world of white supremacists like David Duke and the KKK. In the past, their vision was confined to the fringe, radical right. Now thanks to Donald Trump and Kris Kobach, it could be square center in the White House.