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John Tanton

John Tanton

The modern anti-immigrant movement was set in motion by a network of groups founded by John Tanton and funded by a handful of wealthy donors including Cordelia Scaife May. Scaife May and her Colcom Foundation have funneled millions of dollars into Tanton-founded groups.Colcom continues to bankroll these groups, bolstering their ability to influence immigration policy at the highest levels of government. Additionally, according to the Wall Street Journal, Tanton’s first group, FAIR “has received more than $1.5 million from the Pioneer Fund, a white-supremacist outfit devoted to racial purity through eugenics."

White nationalist John Tanton was the architect of the organized anti-immigrant movement we see today. Tanton who is the author of The Case for Passive Eugenics, helped to found and fund a number of key anti-immigrant groups, in order to maintain a “clear European-American majority,” as Tanton once wrote. 

The modern day anti-immigrant movement began in 1979, when white nationalist and eugenics proponent John Tanton founded his flagship Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR). According to Tanton’s funding proposal to get FAIR started, he said “we plan to make the restriction of immigration a legitimate position for thinking people.” The movement took shape in subsequent years as Tanton either founded or help found other organizations, most notably the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS) in 1985 and NumbersUSA in 1996.

Today, these three Washington, D.C.-based organizations are the country’s most influential advocates of anti-immigrant policies, frequently and disingenuously manipulating data in order to present immigration in a negative light. Their efforts are aided by other organizations Tanton had a hand  in founding including FAIR’s legal arm, the Immigration Reform Law Institute, and U.S. Inc., Tanton’s philanthropic foundation–which have sought to implement nativist policies at the state and local level through litigation and support for other anti-immigrant groups. 

Tanton once wrote, “I’ve come to the point of view that for European-American society and culture to persist requires a European-American majority, and a clear one at that.” His influence on the groups he established is significant and remains today even after his death in July 2019. 

In fact, following Tanton’s passing, FAIR President Dan Stein described his mentor as “a person with extraordinary persistence in promoting ideas,” and a “gift to the nation” who “will be sorely missed.” Tanton’s mentee also noted his influence over immigration policy in the U.S., saying, “Of course for John, the big reward was to see a number of the organizations he helped conceive grow into tall oaks – guiding and shaping the public discourse in history-changing ways.”

Cultivated over decades, FAIR, CIS, NumbersUSA, and IRLI, maintain strong working relationships with members of Congress, state and local electeds, and law enforcement officials. Tanton’s PAC, run by his wife, Mary Lou, has donated thousands of dollars to elected officials, including, Jeff Sessions, Steve King, Mo Brooks and Lou Barletta.  

The modern anti-immigrant movement which Tanton helped to build, now has unprecedented power and influence in the Trump Administration, where they work with White House Senior Policy Advisor, Stephen Miller to implement policies to restrict immigration as much as possible. 

Years ago, Tanton donated a number of boxes of his papers to the University of Michigan’s Bentley Library. Some of these boxes were made available to the public, while boxes 15 – 25 are closed to the public until 2035, per the gift agreement. After a lawsuit brought by immigration attorney and advocate Hassan Ahmad, the Michigan Court of Appeals ruled that the “sealed records are public records and should be made available.” Instead of releasing the records, UM has instead continued to fight against the release of these documents. 

Tanton’s Views on Immigrants and Immigration:

  • In a memo addressed to attendees of Tanton’s nativist retreat, he warned of a “latin onslaught,” asked if Latino immigrants would bring with them the “tradition of the mordida (bribe),” fretted about the “educability” of Latinos, and posed the question, “as whites see their power and control over their lives declining, will they simply go quietly into the night? Or will there be an explosion?”
  • Tanton promoted and helped fund sterilization efforts throughout the developing world for decades, and had a history of attacking religious institutions, such as the Catholic Church. 
  • In 1997, Tanton told the Detroit Free Press that if borders are not secured, America will be overrun by people “defecating and creating garbage and looking for jobs.”
  • The eugenics proponent corresponded regularly with prominent white supremacists including Jared Taylor, Peter Brimelow and Sam Francis.
  • In a letter to benefactor Cordelia Scaife May, Tanton assured his friend that his population control policies would not disrupt their goal of maintaining a white ethnic majority in the U.S.: “The idea behind the population movement was not those of us who thought population was a problem would adopt permanent sub-replacement fertility, and eventually disappear from the scene, handing our territory over to the more fertile, and thereby lose the battle.” 

 

The Scaife Family: Colcom and Sarah Scaife Foundations

Financial Contributions to anti-immigration causes made by Colcom, Sarah Scaife, Scaife Family and the Carthage foundations 2006-2017: $127.69M

A number of foundations connected to the Scaife Family, including the Colcom Foundation and the Sarah Scaife Foundation, are major contributors to the anti-immigrant lobby in the U.S., with the Pittsburgh-based Colcom foundation being the largest single funder. Between 2006 and 2016, Colcom donated over $120 million to anti-immigrant groups. Between 2006 and 2017, the Sarah Scaife Foundation donated almost $4 million to these groups. Between 2006 and 2017, the Scaife Family Foundation donated over $2.2 million to anti-immigrant groups. Between 2006 and 2014, the Carthage Foundation donated over $1.3 million to anti-immigrant groups. 

The Colcom, Sarah Scaife, Scaife Family, and Carthage Foundations were founded, funded, and run by the late Richard Mellon Scaife, his sister Cordelia Scaife May, and their family members. The Scaife Family Foundation is based in West Palm Beach, Florida, and the other foundations are all based in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Scaife and May were the heir and heiress to their parents’ Mellon banking, oil, and aluminum fortune. In 2014, The Carthage Foundation merged with the Sarah Scaife Foundation. Cordelia Scaife May used her fortune to advance causes she personally cared about, specifically the environment, population control, and immigration restriction. She left more than $400 million to her Foundation to promote “sustainable” immigration that wouldn’t “overwhelm the environment.”

Founded in 1996 by May, the Colcom Foundation is the largest funder of anti-immigrant groups in the U.S. John Tanton was a friend of May, whose Colcom Foundation, says it wants to roll back America’s “ever-increasing population,” provided the financial backing for eugenics-proponent Tanton to build a comprehensive network of anti-immigrant groups aimed at preventing as much immigration to the U.S. as possible and preventing future entries.

May, who thought that the U.S. was “being invaded on all fronts,” by immigrants who “breed like hamsters,” bonded with Tanton in the 1970s over their passion for population control, and credited Tanton for helping her “realize she could take a stand for her beliefs.” Like Tanton, May’s obsession with population-control, was largely motivated by race, and once stated that “the unwanted child is not the problem, but rather, the wanted one that society, for diverse cultural reasons, demands.”  Before May died, Colcom gave more than $200,000 to the white supremacist writer Samuel Francis, who opposed halting “all efforts to mix the races of mankind.” Further, Colcom provided funding to VDARE, a website that publishes white nationalist and anti-semitic content.

Leaders at the organizations May helped to build have failed to distance themselves from May’s extremist views, and have noted the role she played in building the groups they now lead. President of FAIR, Dan Stein has said that May was of “enormous foresight and wisdom” and that she and others who helped create FAIR “would be gratified over the fact that we’ve seen these ideas championed at the highest level.” Roy Beck, president of the anti-immigrant grassroots organization NumbersUSA, said of the Colcom foundation, “without them, it would be a very different situation… We’d be functioning at a very different level.” Mark Krikorian, executive director of Tanton’s think thank, CIS, has stated that May was their biggest funder, and that she came to the issue “from the concern about population growth.” Colcom’s current vice president of philanthropy, John Rohe, formerly served on the board of Tanton’s U.S. Inc, wrote a biography of Tanton and his wife, Mary Lou & John Tanton: A Journey into American Conservation, in 2002.

Today, the anti-immigrant network has unprecedented power and influence over immigration policy in the United States; the draconian policies championed by the organizations May kickstarted are being proposed and implemented by the Trump Administration. Unsurprisingly, Colcom has increased their funding to Tanton’s organizations during this time, as reported by the Post Gazette in July 2019. Following a New York Times investigation and front page article which revealed May’s powerful role in funding the anti-immigrant movement, Tiedemann Advisors, the foundation’s wealth management firm, dropped the Colcom Foundation as a client upon learning of their grant making priorities. In a statement to City Paper, the spokesperson of the firm, Julie Dunnington said, “Tiedemann does not work with Colcom currently. Tiedemann previously served as an investment consultant with no role, input or knowledge of their grant making priorities. Upon learning, we resigned the client. Several of their policies are inconsistent with our views on diversity, equity and inclusion.”

Foundation for the Carolinas

Financial Contributions to anti-immigration causes 2006-2017: $23.89M

 

For decades, The Foundation For The Carolinas (FFTC) has supported causes ostensibly “dedicated to the collective strength of communities.” Beneath this altruism, the FFTC quietly shields their largest donor, anti-immigration funder Fred Stanback Jr., who contributed 64% of the foundation’s 2014 revenue

FFTC and its President, Michael Marsicano, have refused to cut off Stanback, even in the face of public backlash and criticism over some of its beneficiaries which include anti-immigrant groups FAIR, CIS and NumbersUSA. These organizations, founded or aided by white nationalist and eugenics proponent John Tanton, have had an enormous influence on immigration policy in the Trump Administration. According to financial records, from 2006-2017, the foundation provided more than $23 million to efforts to restrict immigration in the U.S. 

Fred Stanback, heir to the headache-powder fortune, is one of North Carolina’s biggest donors to environmental causes, and has funded an internship program in his name at Duke University since 1995. For fifteen years, Stanback placed students in internships at FAIR, CIS and NumbersUSA, until Duke pulled the groups from the program in 2014 after a report from Indy Week. Stanback and Tanton connected over their shared interest in overpopulation, and over the years Stanback has donated millions of dollars to groups Tanton founded or helped to found, both through his contributions to FFTC and directly to anti-immigrant groups such as FAIR. Like Tanton, Stanback admired the virulently racist novel The Camp of the Saints, and once purchased $5,000 in copies of the book to distribute. In a 1995 memo on a meeting between the two men, Tanton noted that they had discussed sterilization, and that Tanton had brought up the Quinacrine sterilization method. Quinacrine is a drug that has been used as an off-label form of female sterilization. The Quinacrine sterilization method is a dangerous and painful procedure, and evidence indicates that it has been disproportionately and coercively performed on low-income women of color in developing countries.

 

 

 

The Weeden Foundation

Financial Contributions to anti-immigration causes 2006-2017: $2.03M

The Weeden Foundation funds anti-immigrant organizations to build anti-immigrant sentiment among the leadership of the environmental movement in order to steer them toward taking an anti-immigrant stance.. Between 2006 and 2015, the Weeden foundation, combined with individual donations from Weeden family members, donated just over $2 million to anti-immigrant groups.

The leadership of the Foundation is not content to merely fund these organizations, but also play a leadership role within them. For example, current Weeden Foundation Executive Director, Don Weeden, serves as the treasurer for NumbersUSA.

Don Weeden believes that limiting immigration to the U.S., along with curtailing population growth, is a key to conserving natural habitats and species: “We recognize that 80 percent of population growth is due to our immigration policies… Do we want to grow to a country of 600 million, doubling our population by the end of the century? I think environmentally, no we don’t.” Additionally, Alan Weeden, Don Weeden’s father, serves not only on the Board of Directors of the Weeden Foundation, but also on the Board of Advisors for FAIR, and Jon D. Weeden, a board director for the Weeden Foundation, serves on the advisory board at CAPS (Californians for Population Stabilization).

During the early 1990s, the foundation made at least one donation to FAIR at the same time that FAIR was still accepting funds from the white supremacist, pro-eugenics Pioneer Fund. Alan Weeden was also one of the FAIR board members who met with Pioneer Fund’s then-President Harry Weyher in 1997 — three years after FAIR had ceased taking Pioneer Fund money — to discuss fundraising for FAIR.

Armstrong Foundation

Founded in 1949 by Judge George W. Armstrong who was a KKK supporter and close ally.

The Judge Armstrong Foundation has continued to promote Armstrong’s racist views after his death by contributing over ninety thousand dollars to anti-immigrant organizations including CIS, NumbersUSA and VDARE.

Sidney A. Swensrud Foundation

Financial Contributions to anti-immigration causes 2006-2017: $3.25M

Founded by oil tycoon Sidney A. Swensrud in 1959 in Boston, Massachusetts. Swensrud became interested in immigration restriction at a young age and as a result, Swensrud funded anti-immigration groups through his foundation, including Tanton’s U.S. Inc. Between 2006 and 2017, the Sidney A. Swensrud foundation has donated over $3.2 million to the anti-immigrant movement.

From 1987 to 1988, Swensrud served as chairman of FAIR’s board, and is credited with making “critical policy decisions.” U.S. Inc. has lauded the late Swensrud as a hero, saying that the population control advocate helped steer the group “through an early and near-fatal financial crisis,” and helped “re-establish control over the demographic destiny in the U.S.”

His family is still involved in funding and advising anti-immigrant work, and his son S. Blake Swensrud II sits on FAIR’s board of directors while his granddaughter Nancy Swensrud Anthony, along with Dozier Gardner, serve as Trustees to his foundation.

Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR)

Founded by white nationalist John Tanton in 1979, FAIR is the anti-immigrant movement’s flagship organization, and despite a four-decade-long history of anti-immigrant animus, the group is more influential than ever. FAIR provides the policy framework for the Trump Administration’s draconian immigration policies such as family separation and attacks on DACA and TPS. Many of FAIR’s former staffers have moved into key positions in government agencies such as DHS—where they wield considerable influence and help to execute these harmful measures. 

  • Tanton founded FAIR in 1979 in Washington, D.C. He was on FAIR’s board and advisory board for a number of years before his death in 2019. 
  • FAIR received over $1 million from the Pioneer Fund, an organization which embraced eugenics.
  • The Tanton founded group advocates for harsh anti-immigrant policies across the country such as attrition through enforcement, repealing DACA, dismantling TPS, radical cuts to overall legal immigration numbers, and ending birthright citizenship.
  • FAIR’s work advances legislation that maligns communities of color, both immigrant and native-born. Its self-described mission is to “reduce overall immigration… [including] legal immigration levels from well over one million presently to 300,000 a year… to manage growth” and “address environmental concerns.” For years, FAIR called for a moratorium on all immigration before changing its stance. 
  • FAIR has spent decades advocating for policies designed to shrink the overall immigrant and refugee population in the U.S. FAIR’s unprecedented power and influence in the Trump Administration has led to harsh immigration policies such as the rescission of DACA, ending TPS for over 300,000 individuals, family separation at the border, the Muslim ban, refugee reductions, legal immigration cuts, a Public Charge rule, and increased arrests and deportations of undocumented and documented immigrants. In some cases these deportations have resulted in immigrants returning to countries where they are persecuted and at risk of slavery. FAIR staffers have also taken up positions within DHS.
  • As reported by The New York Times, FAIR wrote in its 2018 federal tax filing that the election of President Donald Trump presented “a unique opportunity” to enact policies such as “building the wall, ending chain migration, rolling back dangerous sanctuary policies,” and “eliminating the visa lottery.”
  • Stein, whose former colleagues have taken up positions within agencies responsible for implementing immigration policy such as USCIS, told the Pittsburgh Post Gazette in June 2019: “you can assume we have contacts throughout the (Trump) administration.”
    • While commenting on FAIR’s new found influence, Stein stated that he was surprised the Trump Administration “haven’t hired more people out of the stable of our organization.”
  • In a New York Times profile on Cordelia Scaife May, FAIR’s President Dan Stein praised her, saying, “We occupied the space before anybody, and the people who helped found the organization and fund the organization, including Mrs. May, were people of enormous foresight and wisdom…They would be gratified over the fact that we’ve seen these ideas championed at the highest level.” May, one of the primary funders of the anti-immigrant movement in the U.S., believed the country was “being invaded on all fronts,” by immigrants who “breed like hamsters.”
  • While some Tanton-founded groups have tried to minimize his role in creating their organizations and driving their policy work, FAIR’s Dan Stein lauded Tanton in a press release in July 2019, after Tanton’s passing: “I have stated that John was a Renaissance man, and that was true.” 
  • For years, FAIR has cultivated relationships with elected officials at both the state and local levels in order to advance anti-immigrant legislation and deter immigration reform efforts. Elected officials who have attended events or worked with FAIR in some fashion include Jan Brewer, Daryl Metcalife, Russell Pearce, Joe Arpaio, Joe Gruters, Thomas Hodgson, Steve King, Tom Cotton, Louie Gohmert, Marsha Blackburn, Paul Gosar, Mo Brooks, Lou Barletta, and Andy Biggs.
  • FAIR also built a strong network of local anti-immigrant groups around the country that it coordinates with on a regular basis in order to help organize on-the-ground opposition to progressive immigration legislation. FAIR has worked successfully with local activists to run or support campaigns pushing attrition through enforcement legislation. FAIR has ties to a number of state-based anti-immigrant groups such as Oregonians for Immigration Reform, We the People Rising, the Dustin Inman Society and Floridians for Immigration Enforcement. Leadership from many of these groups, and more nationally-focused groups such as the Remembrance Project, have also attended FAIR’s flagship Hold Their Feet to the Fire event alongside state and federal elected officials.  
  • Many FAIR staff are longtime anti-immigrant leaders like Dan Stein, but the organization has also developed a number of staff who are now in the Trump Administration or other anti-immigrant groups such as Mark Krikorian, Julie Kirchner, Robert Law, Elizabeth Jacobs, Dale Wilcox, and John Zadrozny. 

Anti-immigrant Views

  • FAIR President Dan Stein, who in 2017 told The New York Times that Americans would “be perfectly fine if we didn’t have another immigrant for 50 years,” shares Tanton’s extreme views on immigration:
    • Stein’s statements on immigrants have often echoed sentiments expressed by Tanton; he once posed the idea of prioritizing reproduction based on IQ score: “Should we be subsidizing people with low IQs to have as many children as possible, and not subsidizing those with high ones?”
    • In a statement marking the 50th anniversary of the Immigration Act of 1965, Stein lamented the increase in the U.S.’s immigrant population: “Mass immigration is radically transforming our nation without any identifiable public interest that is being served…No one is questioning the potentially catastrophic consequences.”
    • Stein claimed that late Senator Ted Kennedy’s immigration policies were “a great way to retaliate against Anglo-Saxon dominance and hubris, and the immigration laws from the 1920s were just this symbol of that, and it’s a form of revengism, or revenge.”
    • In an op-ed for the Daily Caller in March 2016, Stein advocated for attrition through enforcement, which has the same goals as mass deportation, saying, “we should deport illegal aliens when we catch them… Enforcing laws isn’t cheap, but it is the cost of not enforcing our immigration laws that is prohibitively expensive. And, no, our economy would not collapse.”
    • On CNN, Stein praised President Trump’s executive orders on immigration, saying that the recent deportations were an effort to “reclaim our schools, our hospitals, and our communities…”
    • On then-candidate Donald Trump’s proposal to ban Muslims from entering the United States, Stein said, “as a practical matter …. unless somebody’s got a better idea, sounds like it makes pretty good sense to us.”
    • Stein supports ending birthright citizenship: “[the current] erroneous interpretation of the 14th Amendment is defeating the operation of U.S. immigration controls.”
  • FAIR founder John Tanton and FAIR board members Sally Epstein and Donald Collins were longtime advocates of coercive sterilization, specifically supporting the Quinacrine sterilization method. FAIR donated $5,000 in 1993 to the Institute for Development Training (IDT). Two years after the donation, Tanton wrote to Dan Stein and the FAIR board that the Institute for Development Training’s “most recent project is the production of materials on the new Quinacrine sterilization method.” Quinacrine is a drug that has been used as an off-label form of female sterilization. The Quinacrine sterilization method is a dangerous and painful procedure, and evidence indicates that it has been disproportionately and coercively performed on low-income women of color in developing countries.
  • In 2017, FAIR’s executive director Bob Dane refused to disavow Tanton’s infamous quote on maintaining a “European-American majority.” Dane said, “For many, the question of whether a country loses its majority status is a fair question. France, for example, is “probably wondering whether it is still going to be a French country.”

Anti-immigrant Activity

  • FAIR President Dan Stein has publicly supported the Trump Administration’s “zero tolerance” policy and downplayed the severity of family separations. “I think the administration is spot-on. FAIR supports the policy.” Additionally, Stein’s group wrote multiple blog posts supporting the measure. 
  • In the organization’s Immigration Priorities for the 2017 Presidential Transition, the group called upon the incoming Trump Administration to “immediately revoke the orders authorizing the DACA, DACA+ and DAPA.” The group repeatedly lashed out at President Trump for having kept DACA in place for awhile, calling it “an illegal executive overreach.” After the Trump Administration rescinded DACA, FAIR spent close to a million dollars torpedoing bipartisan legislation in the U.S. Senate through lobbying efforts, paid media, and misleading communications targeting family-based immigration. 
  • In addition to spending millions of dollars on radio and television ads, from 2001-2018 FAIR spent over $3.6M in lobbying dollars, and from May 2018 to August 2019 the group spent more than $850,000 on Facebook ads attacking immigrants.
  • Following the rescission of DACA, FAIR drove calls to the offices of House Republicans willing to find a permanent solution for undocumented immigrants who came to the U.S. at a young age.
  • FAIR President Dan Stein also serves on the board of IRLI, which helped initiate and draft Crane v. Napolitano, the unsuccessful legal challenge that pitted several ICE agents against DACA and set the stage for United States v. Texas. Crane also spoke at a press event with sheriffs FAIR helped to organize. 
  • In line with its mission to “reduce overall immigration,” FAIR called on the Trump Administration to cut annual immigration levels by slashing programs under the executive branch’s control “such as: Temporary Protected Status, also know as TPS, the refugee and asylum programs, humanitarian parole and Transit Without Visa.” 
  • FAIR’s website page on Temporary Protected Status (TPS) calls for the program to be scrapped altogether: “TPS is unnecessary and should be abolished,” and in a major policy report, FAIR floated the idea of eliminating certain immigration programs altogether, including TPS. In the same report, the organization proposed that DHS make undocumented immigrants ineligible for TPS and called on the agency’s Secretary torevoke TPS for any country that has received more than two renewals.”
  • In a policy paper, FAIR called for all asylum seekers to be detained for the entirety of their immigration proceedings. Because the process of applying for asylum can take months or even years, this could lead to individuals being detained indefinitely. 
  • Long before the Trump Administration announced New Credible Fear Standards for asylum seekers and refugees, FAIR proposed providing “New Definitions” for persecution.
  • In addition to attacking immigration at the federal level, FAIR advises state elected and regional advocacy groups and has supported efforts to enact harsh attrition through enforcement measures in state legislatures across the country, including Arizona, Texas, Florida, Oregon, among others.

Center for Immigration Studies (CIS)

Viewed as the anti-immigrant movement’s key think tank, CIS has published a litany of reports scapegoating and demonizing immigrants. CIS’s Executive Director Mark Krikorian has defended the organization’s circulation of content from VDARE, a site that routinely publishes the work of white nationalists and anti-Semites by comparing it to The New York Times, and counting it as an “important” site for immigration news. 

  • CIS was founded as a project of FAIR in 1985 to provide legitimacy and lend academic authority to its policy proposals. Its role, as stated by Tanton, was to be “a small think tank [that would] wage the war of ideas” of its parent organization.
  • The group traffics in misinformation and blatant anti-immigrant animus. Over the years, CIS staffers have presented unverifiable anecdotes as established fact, manipulated data to generate misleading evidence in support of their policies, appeared on anti-Semitic radio shows, blamed immigrants for teenage obesity, and have stated that being “hung, drawn and quartered is probably too good” for former U.S. President Barack Obama. 
  • Jared Taylor, one of the most recognized and influential white nationalists of the past half-century has attended and participated in multiple CIS events. Following CIS founder John Tanton’s passing, Taylor who runs the group American Renaissance, stated, “Everything I know about immigration I learned from CIS.”
  • CIS holds an unprecedented amount of power and influence in the Trump Administration, and has provided the policy framework for the President’s harsh and unpopular immigration measures. Additionally, current CIS fellow Ronald Mortensen has been nominated to lead the Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration (PRM), the State Department agency responsible for protecting refugees, and separately, the group’s former legal policy analyst Jon Feere, now serves as a senior advisor at ICE.
  • The group has hosted several officials including then-Acting ICE Director Thomas Homan, then-USCIS Director Lee Francis Cissna, EOIR’s James McHenry, and Acting USCIS Director Ken Cuccinelli, at their “Immigration Newsmaker” events and staffers have championed the Trump Administration’s cruel policy of separating families.
  • In a 2017 ‘Giving Tuesday’ blog post, executive director Mark Krikorian bragged about being referred to as the Trump Administration’s “go-to source for immigration research,” and that the Administration’s immigration principles were “developed and advocated” by CIS. Krikorian said in a blog, “The White House has also submitted to Congress a wish list of 70 immigration improvements, most of which we have developed and advocated.”
  • According to NPR, emails, obtained during discovery in the 2020 Census citizenship question lawsuit, revealed that Trump Administration officials suggested CIS staff members Mark Krikorian and Steven Camarota be contacted for advice and support.
  • The group regularly circulates white nationalist content, including from VDARE. In a May 2017 analysis by the Southern Poverty Law Center and the Center for New Community, it was revealed that CIS had done so more than 2,000 times in the last decade.
  • CIS has championed the doctrine of “self-deportation,” which argues that laws should be enacted to make life so difficult for immigrants that they are forced to return to their countries of origin. The group has been so successful in promoting this doctrine that it has appeared in the policy platforms of senators and GOP presidential candidates. Policies to encourage self-deportation have been found unconstitutional and a violation of individuals’ civil rights.
  • CIS often participates in events with elected officials including Mo Brooks, Jeff Sessions, Steve King, and Lou Barletta among others. 
  • In May 2015, CIS hosted an awards ceremony that honored Breitbart reporter Neil Munro and featured Stephen Miller as a keynote speaker at the event. Breitbart, Fox, and other media outlets often give CIS a platform by interviewing its staffers on immigration issues. 
  • A number of CIS staffers have also spoken at Tanton’s Social Contract Press Writers Workshop event, including Mark Krikorian, Jessica Vaughan and John Miano.

Anti-immigrant Views

  • CIS staff members have a long track record of using demonizing rhetoric in regards to immigrants. .
  • CIS Fellow Dan Cadman called for an expansion of expedited removal due to the “around 11 or 12 million aliens residing and working illegally in the United States.”
  • Krikorian has also called for radical immigration cuts, targeting Muslims: “So alongside ideological screening we need to cut immigration overall, focusing on the categories most likely to cause problems. That means eliminating the visa lottery, an absurd program in its own right but also the source of a disproportionate share of Muslim immigration; limiting family immigration to the closest relations, to prevent a cascading chain of relatives; dramatically curbing refugee resettlement…and reducing the number of foreign-student admissions, the feeder program for a large share of new permanent immigration from the Islamic world.”
  • Krikorian, who frequently makes disparaging statements about immigrants and communities of color, once said that Mexico’s “weakness and backwardness has been deeply harmful to the United States.”
  • Stephen Steinlight, a Senior Policy Analyst at CIS, stated publicly that he believed that being “hung, drawn and quartered is probably too good” for then-President Obama. Steinlight still works for CIS and is a frequent spokesperson for the organization.
  • Beginning in January 2016, CIS began publishing reports and blogs authored by discredited policy analyst Jason Richwine. In 2013, Richwine resigned from The Heritage Foundation following revelations that his Harvard dissertation included appeals to limit immigration based on intelligence.
  • CIS Director of Policy Studies Jessica Vaughan once wrote that the TPS program has contributed to “the burgeoning street gang problem in the United States.”
  • In a piece for Time Magazine, CIS Director of Research Steven Camarota stated that, “even if immigrants are less likely to commit crimes, their children and grandchildren may be more likely to end up on the wrong side of the law.”
  • In 2008, CIS published a report by fellow David Seminara which alleged widespread fraud among marriages between Americans and immigrants in which it referred to the latter as “Third-World gold-diggers.”

Anti-immigrant Activity

  • CIS’s A Pen and a Phone: 79 Immigration Actions the Next President Can Take report has provided a blueprint for the Trump Administration to make life for immigrants and refugees in the United States and those hoping to enter the country as difficult as possible. Policies such as restricting the Temporary Protected Status (TPS) program, an expansion of public charge, ramping up interior enforcement measures, terminating the OPT program, dismantling the asylum system, and ending DACA, are all laid out in detail in the CIS report.
  • In addition to calling for DACA’s repeal, Krikorian has advocated for leveraging protections for DACA recipients in exchange for attrition through enforcement measures and cuts to legal immigration. In a June 2017 blog post, Krikorian wrote, “Though I was initially skeptical, it might even make sense to try to trade a real, lawful amnesty for the DACAs in exchange for important immigration changes only Congress can pass – specifically, universal E-Verify and cuts in legal immigration.” 
  • In a July 2017 interview with Breitbart Texas, Krikorian called for a “legal immigration offset” in exchange for some protections for Dreamers. Krikorian stated, “We’re talking about three-quarters of a million people included in this. There’s got to be a legal immigration offset. The DREAM Act on its own is simply indefensible.”
  • As early as 2010, before DACA, CIS’s Mark Krikorian was outspoken in advocating for harsh attrition through enforcement measures and cuts to legal immigration in exchange legal status for Dreamers. Since DACA’s rescission, CIS has worked to derail all bipartisan efforts to provide legal protections for Dreamers. The group has even sued USCIS for DACA application data which the U.S government committed to keeping separate from enforcement activities.
  • On August 5, 2017, Univision reported that Krikorian’s group helped Stephen Miller, along with the bill’s sponsors Senators Cotton and Perdue draft the RAISE Act, which would slash immigration numbers by half.
  • In the fall of 2017, CIS staffers worked overtime to advocate for severely restrictionist policies in exchange for a legislative solution for undocumented immigrants who came to the U.S. at a young age, propagating and weaponizing the term “Chain-migration.” CIS staffer Jessica Vaughan authored a report entitled Immigration Multipliers: Trends in Chain Migration, and testified at a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on DACA.
  • On December 4, 2017, CIS hosted a panel discussion on the report. The event took place at the National Press Club. Panel participants included Vaughan, as well as RAISE Act co-sponsor Sen. Perdue.
  • In CIS’s 2016 “Pen and a Phone” policy report, the group called on the next president to terminate “TPS designations that have been in effect for years for several nations, such as El Salvador…” and to issue an “EO directing that no TPS designation may stay in effect longer than one year unless vetted and approved through the National Security Council prior to being extended, and only in a one-year increment.” 
  • Mark Krikorian has repeatedly attacked the TPS program on social media and in the National Review. In one instance, he even went so far as to call for the program to be abolished.
  • CIS staffers including Mark Krikorian have for years pushed for the “zero-tolerance” policy which when implemented by the Trump Administration, resulted in children being separated from their parents. In 2014, Krikorian wrote in National Review, “it is now practical to adopt a zero-tolerance strategy along the entire border.” CIS fellow, Andrew Arthur, called family separation an “absolutely crucial” step to “reducing the flow of parents and their children,” saying “there really is no other choice.” Further, Krikorian wrote that critics of the harsh policy were generating a “wave of hysteria” and described widely circulated photos of distressed families as “atrocity propaganda.” 
  • CIS has called for numerous changes to the asylum system such as doing away with protections for children and their families arriving at the border, expanding immigration detention and expedited removal, refusing to release unaccompanied minors to family members who are undocumented unless they surrender themselves for removal proceedings, restricting work authorization for individuals with pending asylum cases, and denying asylum to individuals who pass through other countries en route to the United States.

 

NumbersUSA

NumbersUSA is primarily a grassroots and lobbying organization that mobilizes its members to pressure elected officials to reject pro-immigrant legislation and to approve harmful anti-immigrant legislation both at the federal and state levels. NumbersUSA has become deeply influential among lawmakers at the highest levels of the U.S. government. The group has a deep level of influence over President Trump’s immigration policies.

  • Roy Beck founded NumbersUSA in 1996. Initially, the organization operated as a program of John Tanton’s foundation, U.S., Inc.
  • The group fosters anti-immigrant sentiment to mobilize its grassroots base for political action.
  • NumbersUSA directs thousands of calls and emails to members of Congress to defeat legislation, attempts to influence primaries in support of nativist candidates, and attempts to shift the national conversation around immigration further to the right, in concert with other members of the organized anti-immigrant movement.
  • NumbersUSA has become deeply influential among lawmakers at the highest levels of the U.S. government. It has driven the introduction of anti-immigrant legislation that has, in turn, helped NumbersUSA catalyze additional anti-immigrant organizing. NumbersUSA has built relationships with a number of elected officials, once honoring Jeff Sessions with its Defender of the Rule of Law Award. The group also has held events and coordinated with other elected officials including Ken Paxton, Steve King, Tom Cotton, Lou Barletta, Paul Gosar and Andy Biggs. Rosemary Jenks, the longtime director of government relations for NumbersUSA serves as a bridge between the organization and Congress. 
  • NumbersUSA, like FAIR, often works with state-based anti-immigrant groups such as the Dustin Inman Society. 
  • Beck, the group’s executive director and Tanton’s “heir apparent,” previously stated that “the aim should be to halt all immigration possible.”
  • NumbersUSA helped to provide the Trump campaign with its immigration policy framework during the 2016 Presidential race. In October 2016 Beck told Reuters that in addition to having met with the candidate personally and people “at the top” of his campaign, the group had shared with them a ten-point immigration plan. Of the ten points, six were echoed by Trump in his major immigration speech in August 2016.

Anti-immigrant Views

  • NumbersUSA says “no to immigrant bashing” but Beck bragged about doing his best to make “immigration radioactive in as many places as possible,” and has said that the goal should be to “halt all immigration possible.”
  • In addition to serving as the former Washington editor of Tanton’s racist publication The Social Contract, the group’s executive director Roy Beck spoke at multiple events organized by the white supremacist Council of Conservative Citizens in the late 1990s.
  • Beck was once interviewed on the “Alien Invasion of the US,” by Jeff Rense, according to an archive of his interviews. Rense runs a blatantly anti-Semitic website.
  • During a 2016 Reddit ask me anything, Beck entertained racist questions and policy proposals, advocated for temporary bans on refugees and slashing legal immigration by 75%, called immigration a “program of forced population growth,” and said that “Refugee resettlement is mainly about some people in rich countries making themselves feel morally superior rather than responding to the greatest needs of the refugees.”
  • Beck has stated that integration of immigrants in Europe is unlikely to be successful “unless they do what the U.S. did in the 1920s.”
  • Beck published a population control paper with fellow immigration restrictionist and immigrant scapegoater Leon Kolankiewicz titled, “The Environmental Movement’s Retreat from Advocating, U.S. Population Stabilization (1970–1998): A First Draft of History.”
  • Beck, who has advocated against the TPS program for years, has praised the Trump Administration’s decision to terminate protections for many of the program’s hundreds of thousands of recipients, and railed against a court injunction which blocked the Administration from doing so.  
  • In 2008, the NumbersUSA President rejected calls for Haitians to receive TPS after devastating storms ravaged the country. 

Anti-immigrant Activity

  • NumbersUSA and Beck have spent decades advocating for policies designed to shrink the overall immigrant population in the U.S. 
  • In addition to spending millions of dollars on radio and television ads, from 2001-2018 NumbersUSA spent over $7M in lobbying dollars, and from May 2018 to August 201,9 the group spent nearly $900,000 on Facebook ads attacking immigrants.
  • Like FAIR and CIS, Beck’s group has an unprecedented amount of power and influence over President Trump’s immigration policy, and the results have been disastrous. Perhaps most notably is NumbersUSA’s work to end DACA and derail permanent protections for undocumented immigrants who came to the U.S. at a young age. In addition to publicly pressuring President Trump to end the program, NumbersUSA spent over a million dollars working to derail bipartisan talks on protections for these immigrants. In addition to publicly pressuring President Trump to end the program, NumbersUSA spent over a million dollars working to derail bipartisan talks on protections for these immigrants.
    • Ahead of a vote on H.R. 6, the Dream and Promise Act, NumbersUSA urged its supporters and members of Congress, including some Democrats, to vote against the measure. The group placed Facebook ads targeting a number of moderate Democratic representatives including some freshman members.
  • Roy Beck, executive director of NumbersUSA, has publicly supported the strategy led by Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton to sue the Trump Administration over DACA including in a NumbersUSA newsletter on July 28, 2017, in which he praised the “Paxton ultimatum:” “Ken Paxton is providing a way for Pres. Trump to finally honor his campaign promises to stop this DACA program for perhaps a million young adult illegal aliens to gain work permits. The Paxton ultimatum gives the President an excuse to reject the advice of his pro-amnesty advisors and to stop issuing work permits that he said as a candidate are unconstitutional.”
  • In 2012, NumbersUSA coordinated with former IRLI lawyer Kris Kobach on the Crane v. Napolitano case,  the suit that pitted ICE against the Obama Administration’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and set the stage for United States v. Texas, and the subsequent legal attacks the program has faced. The same day Kobach filed the lawsuit on behalf of ten Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents, NumbersUSA announced that it would financially support the legal effort against DACA. In a blog post that read more as a fundraising appeal than an announcement, Beck said the ICE agents’ legal team would be “funded entirely by NumbersUSA member contributions.”
  • The group has used its grassroots network to drive calls and faxes and write letters to lawmakers during both the Obama and Trump Administrations, urging representatives to support policies and amendments attached to must-pass bills offered by anti-immigrant representatives in the House and Senate. Policy proposals have ranged from removing work authorization from DACA recipients to forbidding undocumented immigrants who came to the U.S. at a young age from serving in the military, rescinding the program altogether to harsh interior enforcement policies. They have also stridently supported ending birthright citizenship, dramatic cuts to legal immigration, including ending family-based immigration, and increased border wall funding.

Immigration Reform Law Institute (IRLI)

Founded in 1986 as a legal arm of FAIR, IRLI now serves as the legal outfit for the anti-immigrant movement, drafting model anti-immigrant legislation for lawmakers, defending their harmful measures in court, and litigating against cities and states that have passed ordinances and laws welcoming immigrants. As an integral part of the organized anti-immigrant movement, IRLI has been behind the legal strategies attacking DACA recipients, including Crane v. Napolitano and U.S. v. Texas. In recent years, IRLI lawyers have brought several cases to the highest levels of the U.S. court system. Former IRLI counsel Kris Kobach, has helped to implement anti-immigrant measures, many of them overturned in lawsuits but costing municipalities millions of dollars. Despite these failures, IRLI and its attorneys have become a regular presence in the country’s most prominent immigration-related cases. On August 29, 2019, the group filed two legal briefs at the U.S. Supreme Court in support of the Trump Administration on DACA litigation. President Trump quoted IRLI’s director of litigation Christopher Hajec in a series of tweets on September 6, 2019, urging the court to rule in his Administration’s favor.

 

  • IRLI was founded in 1986 by John Tanton. As an integral part of the organized anti-immigrant movement, IRLI, the Tanton network’s litigation arm, is the primary powerhouse behind several anti-immigrant bills and lawsuits in localities and states across the country.
  • Groups like IRLI, FAIR, CIS and NumbersUSA have an enormous amount of influence over the Trump Administration’s immigration policies and have even placed former staffers in government agencies such as U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, Department of Justice and Department of Homeland Security. IRLI’s former investigative associate Ian Smith went on to work as a policy analyst for DHS before resigning from his post, shortly before The Atlantic reported he had been on email chains with white nationalists including Richard Spencer and Jared Taylor. 
  • In addition to taking on legal battles, IRLI staff also draft legislation and work with lawmakers to flood state legislative dockets with anti-immigrant bills. The most recognizable example is Arizona’s infamous SB 1070, which Kobach co-authored with former state Senator Russell Pearce, and which was signed into law by then-Governor Jan Brewer.
  • IRLI Counsel and former staff attorney for FAIR, Michael Hethmon calls the harsh attrition through enforcement measures drafted and defended by the group “field tests,” designed to test the legality of different anti-immigrant policies.
  • Several of these initiatives have bankrupted local economies and left taxpayers on the hook for massive legal tabs, a portion of which was paid to Kobach, who offers his legal services when the measures he authored are taken to court. According to the Kansas City Star Kobach “earned more than $800,000 for his immigration work, paid by both towns and an advocacy group, over 13 years.”
  • Below are just a few examples of the costs to cities and states of the policies IRLI and their former lawyer Kris Kobach worked on:
    • Hazleton, PA, July 13, 2006 – Hazleton took on debt to pay $1.4 million in legal fees and eventually had to file for a state bailout. Former Congressman Lou Barletta worked with Kobach on this legislation while he was mayor of Hazleton.
    • Farmers Branch, TX, 2006 – Farmer’s Branch paid over $7 million in legal fees. Then-Mayor Bob Phelps has since called Kobach’s pitch “a sham,” Phelps stated “It was just a sad situation that we had to go through, and everybody now regrets it.”
    • AZ SB1070, 2010 – According to the Center for American Progress Arizona lost an estimated “$253 million in economic output, $9.4 million in tax revenues, and 2,761 jobs.”
    • AL HB 56, 2011 – Researchers estimated that HB 56 could cost the state nearly $11 billion in lost economic output and as much as $264.5 million in tax revenue.
  • In 2007, representatives from IRLI and FAIR joined Daryl Metcalfe, founder of State Legislators for Legal Immigration (SLLI) to announce that SLLI would enter into a “working partnership” with IRLI to create a set of model attrition through enforcement legislation that state legislators across the country could introduce in their legislatures. 
  • Several other IRLI staffers and board members are employed or have been previously employed by other Tanton groups, such as FAIR President Dan Stein, who serves on IRLI’s board of directors.

Anti-immigrant Views

  • Former IRLI counsel Kris Kobach entertained the possibility that Latinx immigrants could conduct “ethnic cleansing” in the U.S. by outnumbering the current white majority, due to what Kobach described as having “a president who disregards the law when it suits his interests.” Kobach continued, “So, while I normally would answer that by saying, ‘Steve, of course we have the rule of law, that could never happen in America,’ I wonder what could happen. I still don’t think it’s going to happen in America, but I have to admit, things are strange and they are happening.”
  • On the Gold Star Khan Family berated by Donald Trump, Kobach stated: “It is maddening to be lectured about our Constitution and about what American law should be by aliens in the United States.”
  • Kobach has advocated for the dismantling of the 14th Amendment, which grants birthright citizenship: “Any justice who sought to come to the conclusion that the Constitution requires citizenship for the children of illegal aliens would have to explain what the words ‘subject to the jurisdiction thereof’ mean, and that’s a very difficult task for them to do.”
  • In 2017 Kobach told a group of Republicans gathered at state convention that he had been advising President Trump on methods to overcome federal court rulings blocking the administration’s first executive order related to the Muslim Ban.
  • Kobach was critical of the Trump Administration’s decision to allow a small transition period for the hundreds of thousands of Temporary Protected Status (TPS) holders who have lived in the U.S. for decades and who have nearly 300,000 U.S. children. In a November 2017 interview for Breitbart, Kobach opined, “We expected the Trump Administration to return sanity to the TPS program. But, sadly, this recent decision continues the Obama administration’s abuse of the law.”
  • At an immigration debate, IRLI Senior Counsel Michael Hethmon described his support for attrition through enforcement policies: “By making the environment for illegal aliens so inhospitable, especially in economic terms — if you can’t get a job, can’t pay rent — then maybe it’s not the good deal it’s cracked up to be.”
  • Hethmon has argued that the United States’ transition to a country where the majority of its citizens are people of color could lead to violence.
  • In an op-ed for CNN in 2010, Hethmon described his work to enact harsh state-based immigration laws like Arizona’s SB 1070 in the hopes of offering model legislation for Congress: “Sink or swim, these new laws are forcing Congress to confront the need for enforcement-based reform. State enactments like SB 1070 will continue to offer Congress models for national legislation and serve as legal antibodies against the fallacy of amnesty.”

Anti-immigrant Activity

  • In addition to the group’s unprecedented power and influence over the Trump Administration’s immigration policies, Tanton’s legal group has continued its attacks on immigrants via the judicial branch of government and has been a frequent supporter of the Trump Administration’s policies even as they face numerous constitutional challenges.
  • IRLI has filed friend of the court briefs in support of the Trump Administration’s policies including the  Muslim Ban, dismantling of asylum law, declaring a national emergency to fund a wall along the Southern border, the 2020 Census citizenship question and ending DACA.
  • Additionally, IRLI continues its work to dismantle birthright citizenship, employment based immigration, work authorization for immigrants, supported the Georgia higher education system’s decision to deny DACA recipients access to certain universities in the state, and former Arizona Governor Jan Brewer’s attempt to deny driver’s licenses to DACA recipients.
  • IRLI is one of the primary architects behind the legal attacks on undocumented immigrants who came to the U.S. at a young age and the DACA program. Following the Supreme Court’s failure to reach a majority decision in the U.S. v. Texas case, IRLI issued a press release lauding the outcome, and confirming their behind-the-scenes work to attack these immigrants: “IRLI advised the Texas Attorney-General’s office on key facets of the case and filed a total of six friend-of-the-court briefs throughout the case’s proceedings.” 
  • The Center for New Community report titled IRLI Beginnings: The Immigration Reform Law Institute and the Anti-Immigrant Origins of United States v. Texas detailed IRLI’s role in key legal battles on immigration policy over the last decade and its work to pave the way for the legal attacks on the DACA program.
    • IRLI’s former counsel Kris Kobach helped initiate and draft anti-immigrant lawsuits like Crane v. Napolitano, the suit that pitted ICE against President Obama’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and set the stage for United States v. Texas.
    • Crane v. Napolitano came as a response DACA and was filed on August 23, 2012, in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Texas, on behalf of 10 Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents. Chris Crane, president of the National ICE Council union, served as lead plaintiff and spokesperson for the ICE agents involved in the case.
    • That same day, NumbersUSA announced that it would financially support the legal effort against DACA. In a blog post that reads more as a fundraising appeal than an announcement, NumbersUSA President Roy Beck said the ICE agents’ legal team would be “funded entirely by NumbersUSA member contributions.” Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant announced his state would join Kobach and NumbersUSA’s lawsuit on October 10, 2012.
    • Anti-immigrant leaders once again attempted to use individual states as plaintiffs against former President Obama’s deportation relief programs, as Kobach attempted with Mississippi in Crane, in Texas v. U.S.
    • On November 22, 2014, two days after President Obama’s announcement on DAPA and the expansion of DACA, the Washington Post reported that then-IRLI lawyer Kris Kobach had already begun drafting a lawsuit, and was shopping for a state with a large undocumented population to act as the plaintiff. Kobach told participants at a community forum that that he “already begun drafting a suit as the lead attorney, with plans to file it in early December,” and that “Texas is interested in being a plaintiff.” On December 3, 2014, then-Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott filed a lawsuit challenging DAPA and DACA+. From there, the newly elected Attorney General, Ken Paxton, carried out the lawsuit through to the U.S. Supreme Court.
  • In January 2016, IRLI filed a motion on behalf of its client, OFIR, to intervene and dismiss a lawsuit against the outcome of the 2014 ballot measure, which overturned the state’s law to expand drivers licenses to undocumented immigrants. In a press release announcing the motion, IRLI executive director Wilcox stated “Illegal aliens do not have a right to driving privileges, nor do they have a right to travel freely in the U.S. as federal law makes their very presence in the U.S. unlawful.”

Dan Stein

Executive Director of FAIR and Board Director member of IRLI

An integral figure in the anti-immigrant movement for over three decades, Stein and his organization have orchestrated countless attacks on immigrants ranging from drafting restrictionist policies to arguing that immigrants are “getting into competitive breeding.” FAIR President Dan Stein told The New York Times in 2017 that Americans would “be perfectly fine if we didn’t have another immigrant for 50 years,” and has publicly supported the Trump Administration’s family separation policy. Some of Stein’s former colleagues at FAIR, like Julie Kirchner and Robert Law, have moved into positions within the Trump Administration. While commenting on FAIR’s new found influence, Stein stated that he was “surprised they haven't hired more people out of the stable of our organization.”

  • FAIR President Dan Stein, who has been a leading figure in the anti-immigrant movement since the 1980s, was a mentee of white nationalist John Tanton and has referred to him as a “Renaissance man,” including in a glowing eulogy after his passing.
  • In his tribute, Stein called Tanton a “selfless giver,” “remarkable giant,” stated that he was “interested in history and the future, in population policy…assimilation,” and that he “made those ideas move with incredible success over time.” Stein closed the tribute by hailing Tanton as a “gift to the nation.”
  • Stein has served as president of FAIR since 2003 and as a FAIR staffer for over 35 years. He’s worked alongside a number of current FAIR staffers, as well as others who have left to join other anti-immigrant groups or the Trump Administration, including Mark Krikorian, Julie Kirchner, Robert Law, Elizabeth Jacobs, John Zadrozny and Dale Wilcox. 
  • In a New York Times profile on Cordelia Scaife May, Stein praised her, saying, “We occupied the space before anybody, and the people who helped found the organization and fund the organization, including Mrs. May, were people of enormous foresight and wisdom…They would be gratified over the fact that we’ve seen these ideas championed at the highest level.” May, one of the primary funders of the anti-immigrant movement in the U.S., believed the country was “being invaded on all fronts,” by immigrants who “breed like hamsters.” 
  • As leader of the country’s most prominent anti-immigrant organization, Stein has exhibited blatant animus toward immigrants. He has previously lamented the repeal of overtly racist immigration laws passed in the 1920s as a “great way to retaliate against Anglo-Saxon dominance” and a form of “revenge.” Stein also noted that repealing these laws “will continue to create chaos down the line.”
  • Stein and FAIR have spent decades advocating for policies designed to shrink the overall immigrant and refugee population in the U.S. FAIR’s power and influence in the Trump Administration has led to harsh immigration policies such as the rescission of DACA, ending TPS for over 300,000 individuals, family separation at the border, the Muslim ban, refugee reductions, legal immigration cuts, a Public Charge rule, and increasing arrests and deportations of undocumented and documented immigrants. In some cases these deportations have resulted in immigrants returning to countries where they are persecuted and at risk of slavery.
  • As reported by The New York Times, Stein’s group wrote in its 2018 federal tax filing that the election of President Donald Trump presented “a unique opportunity” to enact policies such as “building the wall, ending chain migration, rolling back dangerous sanctuary policies,” and “eliminating the visa lottery.”
  • Stein, whose former colleagues have taken up positions within agencies responsible for implementing immigration policy such as USCIS, told the Pittsburgh Post Gazette in June 2019:  “you can assume we have contacts throughout the (Trump) administration.”
  • For many years, Stein was a contributor to Tanton’s journal, The Social Contract
  • In March of 2019, Stein posed for a photo with Congressman Andy Biggs, after he was invited to speak at a House Border Security Caucus meeting.

Anti-immigrant Views

  • In 1997, Stein derided immigrants as un-American. “Immigrants don’t come all church-loving, freedom-loving, God-fearing.” Stein told The Wall Street Journal. “Many of them hate America; hate everything that the United States stands for. Talk to some of these Central Americans.”
  • Although Stein has spent decades demonizing immigrants, he dismissed connections between FAIR’s ideology and views expressed by the El Paso shooter who targeted Latinx people in August 2019. 
  • FAIR’s self-described mission is to “reduce overall immigration… [including] legal immigration levels from well over one million presently to 300,000 a year… to manage growth” and “address environmental concerns.” For years, FAIR called for a moratorium on all immigration before changing its stance.
  • Stein’s statements on immigrants have often echoed sentiments expressed by Tanton; he once posed the idea of prioritizing reproduction based on IQ score: “Should we be subsidizing people with low IQs to have as many children as possible, and not subsidizing those with high ones?”
  • In a statement marking the 50th anniversary of the Immigration Act of 1965, Stein lamented the increase of the U.S.’s immigrant population: “Mass immigration is radically transforming our nation without any identifiable public interest that is being served…No one is questioning the potentially catastrophic consequences.”
  • Stein claimed that late Senator Ted Kennedy’s immigration policies were: “a great way to retaliate against Anglo-Saxon dominance and hubris, and the immigration laws from the 1920s were just this symbol of that, and it’s a form of revengism, or revenge.”
  • In an op-ed for the Daily Caller in March 2016, Stein advocated for attrition through enforcement, which has the same goals as mass deportation, saying, “we should deport illegal aliens when we catch them… Enforcing laws isn’t cheap, but it is the cost of not enforcing our immigration laws that is prohibitively expensive. And, no, our economy would not collapse.”
  • On CNN, Stein praised President Trump’s executive orders on immigration, saying that the recent deportations were an effort to “reclaim our schools, our hospitals, and our communities.”
  • On then-candidate Donald Trump’s proposal to ban Muslims from entering the United States, Stein said, “as a practical matter …. unless somebody’s got a better idea, sounds like it makes pretty good sense to us.”
  • Stein supports ending birthright citizenship: “[the current] erroneous interpretation of the 14th Amendment is defeating the operation of U.S. immigration controls.”

Anti-immigrant Activity

  • Stein has publicly supported the Trump Administration’s “zero tolerance” policy and downplayed the severity of family separations. “I think the administration is spot-on. FAIR supports the policy,” Dan Stein said on Fox and Friends in 2018. Additionally, Stein’s group wrote multiple blog posts supporting the measure. 
  • In FAIR’s Immigration Priorities for the 2017 Presidential Transition paper published in November 2016, the group called for Trump to “immediately revoke the orders authorizing the DACA, DACA+ and DAPA schemes; and revoke all work, identity, and immigration status documents issued pursuant thereto.”
  • FAIR repeatedly lashed out at President Trump for having kept DACA in place for awhile, calling it “an illegal executive overreach.” After the Trump Administration rescinded DACA, FAIR spent close to a million dollars torpedoing bipartisan legislation in the U.S. Senate through lobbying efforts, paid media, and misleading communications targeting family-based immigration. 
  • From 2001-2018 Stein’s group spent over $3.6M in lobbying dollars, and from May 2018 to August 2019 the group spent more than $850,000 on Facebook ads attacking immigrants.
  • The FAIR President serves on the board of Immigration Reform Law Institute (IRLI), which helped initiate and draft Crane v. Napolitano, the suit that pitted ICE against DACA and set the stage for United States v. Texas. Stein has held joint press events with IRLI and has defended former IRLI lawyer Kris Kobach in the past.
  • IRLI and FAIR filed a joint amicus brief on behalf of FAIR in support of Texas at the Supreme Court.
  • In a December 2014 op-ed, Stein derided the Obama Administration’s creation of DAPA and the expansion of DACA as an effort “to re-engineer this society” that “will make the nation ungovernable.”
  • In FAIR’s major policy report, it floated the idea of eliminating certain immigration programs altogether including TPS, and in the same report it proposed that DHS make undocumented immigrants ineligible for the program.
  • After a judge blocked President Trump’s move to terminate TPS for immigrants from El Salvador, Haiti, Nicaragua, and Sudan, Stein backed Trump in a press release issued by FAIR, “When the Trump Administration moved to restore the integrity of the TPS program by terminating the designations for El Salvador, Haiti, Nicaragua, and Sudan, it was acting fully within the scope of its authority.”
  • In a 2018 interview with NPR, Stein exclaimed, “It is beyond ludicrous to suggest that TPS should be extended any longer. There’s simply no basis for it.”
  • In a policy paper, FAIR called for asylum seekers determined to have a “credible fear” of persecution to be detained for the entirety of their immigration proceedings. Because the process of applying for asylum can take months and even years, this would mean individuals could be detained indefinitely. 
  • Long before the Trump Administration announced New Credible Fear Standards for asylum seekers and refugees, Stein’s group proposed providing “New Definitions” for persecution.

Mark Krikorian

Executive Director of CIS

Despite his routine bigoted comments about immigrants and Muslims, Mark Krikorian is one of the most prominent figures in the anti-immigrant movement and is regularly cited by the media. Despite Krikorian’s efforts to distance himself and the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS) from white nationalists in order to maintain their perceived credibility, Krikorian has defended CIS’s circulation of content from VDARE. VDARE is a website that routinely publishes the work of white nationalists and anti-Semites, but Krikorian compared it to the New York Times, and counted it as an “important” site for immigration news.

  • Krikorian, who previously worked at FAIR, has served as CIS’s executive director since 1995. CIS founder John Tanton wrote to Krikorian to congratulate him on his new role, and on several other occasions he wrote Krikorian about “various aspects of policy.” He has worked with a number of CIS’s current staffers and those who have left to join other anti-immigrant groups or the Trump Administration including Jessica Vaughan, Andrew Arthur, Steven Camarota, Rosemary Jenks, John Miano, Jon Feere, and Ronald  Mortensen.
  • Krikorian who penned the book entitled The New Case Against Immigration: Both Legal and Illegal, authors policy papers, provides research to lawmakers, testifies at congressional hearings, offers commentary to journalists, and is an active Twitter user. Krikorian advocates for attrition through enforcement or self deportation, ending birthright citizenship, imposing radical restrictions on refugee entries, restricting immigrants who are Muslim, massive reductions to legal immigration, and more.
  • The CIS executive director has floated the idea of housing unaccompanied children at Guantanamo Bay and advocated for a “zero-tolerance” policy. Further, Krikorian wrote that critics of family separation were generating a “wave of hysteria” and described widely reported photos as “atrocity propaganda.” 
  • CIS holds an unprecedented amount of power and influence in the Trump Administration, and has provided the policy framework for the President’s harsh and unpopular immigration measures. Additionally, current CIS fellow Ronald Mortensen has been nominated to lead the Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration (PRM), the State Department agency responsible for protecting refugees, and separately, the group’s former legal policy analyst Jon Feere, now serves as a senior advisor at ICE.
  • The group has hosted several officials including then-Acting ICE Director Thomas Homan, then-USCIS Director Lee Francis Cissna, EOIR’s James McHenry, and Acting USCIS Director Ken Cuccinelli, at their “Immigration Newsmaker” events and staffers have championed the Trump Administration’s cruel policy of separating families.
  • Krikorian, who has said he doesn’t meet with President Trump on a regular basis, has indicated that he frequently deals with immigration staff in the White House: “Usually we’ll get requests about, ‘Is this a good idea or do you have research on X, Y, Z?’”
  • According to NPR, emails obtained during discovery for the 2020 Census citizenship question lawsuit, revealed that Trump Administration officials suggested CIS staff members Mark Krikorian and Steven Camarota be contacted for advice and support.
  • of separating families.
  • In a 2017 ‘Giving Tuesday’ blog post, executive director Mark Krikorian bragged about being referred to as the Trump Administration’s “go-to source for immigration research,” and that the Administration’s immigration principles were “developed and advocated” by CIS. Krikorian stated in a blog, “The White House has also submitted to Congress a wish list of 70 immigration improvements, most of which we have developed and advocated.”
  • Krikorian has called the presence of President Trump’s chief policy advisor Stephen Miller in the White House important, saying: “If he weren’t there, I’m pretty sure it’d be worse.”

Anti-immigrant Views

  • Following the 2019 mass murder in an El Paso, Texas Walmart, which targeted Latinx people, Krikorian called the manifesto of the alleged killer,“remarkably well-written for a 21-year-old loner.” 
  • In an interview with C-SPAN Krikorian expressed that “mass immigration in a modern society” is a “problem in a whole variety of reasons.” The interview was regarding his organization being funded by Cordelia Scaife May, a population control advocate who believed the U.S. was “being invaded on all fronts” by immigrants who “breed like hamsters.”
  • In 2015 the former FAIR employee spoke at The Social Contract Press’ annual Writers’ Workshop event. The Social Contract Press was founded in 1990 by John Tanton, who served as editor for the outlet known for featuring white nationalist writers, and most infamously in 1994 republished an English translation of the openly racist novel The Camp of the Saints.
  • During the 2016 presidential election, Krikorian proposed returning to the Cold War-era policy of  “ideological exclusion” as an alternative to Donald Trump’s call for a “a total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States.” In the same piece for National Review, Krikorian called for radical immigration cuts targeting Muslims: “So alongside ideological screening we need to cut immigration overall, focusing on the categories most likely to cause problems. That means eliminating the visa lottery, an absurd program in its own right but also the source of a disproportionate share of Muslim immigration; limiting family immigration to the closest relations, to prevent a cascading chain of relatives; dramatically curbing refugee resettlement…and reducing the number of foreign-student admissions, the feeder program for a large share of new permanent immigration from the Islamic world.”
  • In an article for the National Review entitled “End Birthright Citizenship Now,” Krikorian called the 14th Amendment an “archaic practice.” He argued, “What matters is that automatic citizenship for anyone and everyone born on our soil is a policy that has outlived its usefulness.”
  • Krikorian, who often disparages immigrants on social media, has previously referred to immigrants as a “poor, problem-ridden demographic who are addicted to big government,” and authored a book titled: The New Case Against Immigration: Both Legal and Illegal.
  • Krikorian and his staff are quoted by journalists nationwide hundreds of times annually, falsely positioning themselves as moderately conservative on immigration and providing an opposing viewpoint in a range of articles.
  • The CIS Executive Director, who once stated in the National Review that Haiti “wasn’t colonized long enough,” wrote for the same outlet that the “Islamic world democracy” faced the “problem of a vicious people.” In an article for the National Review published in April 2011, Krikorian wrote, “Well, I’m afraid that in the Islamic world democracy faces the problem of a vicious people, one where the desire for freedom is indeed written in every human heart, but the freedom to do evil.”

Anti-immigrant Activity

  • CIS’s A Pen and a Phone: 79 Immigration Actions the Next President Can Take report has provided a blueprint for the Trump Administration to make life for immigrants and refugees in the United States and those hoping to enter the country as difficult as possible. Policies such as restricting the Temporary Protected Status (TPS) program, an expansion of public charge, ramping up interior enforcement measures, terminating the OPT program, dismantling the asylum system, and ending DACA, are all laid out in detail in the CIS report.
  • In addition to calling for DACA’s repeal, Krikorian has advocated for leveraging protections for DACA recipients in exchange for attrition through enforcement measures and cuts to legal immigration. In a June 2017 blog post, Krikorian wrote, “Though I was initially skeptical, it might even make sense to try to trade a real, lawful amnesty for the DACAs in exchange for important immigration changes only Congress can pass – specifically, universal E-Verify and cuts in legal immigration.” 
  • In a July 2017 interview with Breitbart Texas, Krikorian called for a “legal immigration offset” in exchange for some protections for Dreamers. Krikorian stated, “We’re talking about three-quarters of a million people included in this. There’s got to be a legal immigration offset. The DREAM Act on its own is simply indefensible.”
  • As early as 2010, before DACA, CIS’s Mark Krikorian was outspoken in advocating for harsh attrition through enforcement measures and cuts to legal immigration in exchange legal status for Dreamers. Since DACA’s rescission, CIS has worked to derail all bipartisan efforts to provide legal protections for Dreamers. 
  • During Congressional negotiations on the program in 2017, Krikorian drove calls to the offices of House Republicans willing to find a permanent solution in the U.S. for DACA-eligible immigrants.
  • In July 2018, CIS filed a lawsuit against USCIS requesting DACA application data, which the U.S. government promised would not be used for enforcement actions against the program’s recipients.
  • On August 5, 2017 Univision reported that Krikorian’s group helped Stephen Miller, along with the bill’s sponsors Senators Cotton and Perdue draft the RAISE Act, which would slash immigration numbers by half.
  • Krikorian has repeatedly attacked the TPS program on social media and in the National Review. In one instance, he even went so far as to call for the program to be abolished.
  • For the National Review, Krikorian wrote in 2018, “It’s long past time for this “temporary” status to end.” Further, in CIS’s 2016 “Pen and a Phone” policy report the group called on the next President to terminate “TPS designations that have been in effect for years for several nations, such as El Salvador…” and to issue an “EO directing that no TPS designation may stay in effect longer than one year unless vetted and approved through the National Security Council prior to being extended, and only in a one-year increment.” 
  • Following the Trump Administration’s expansion of public charge, Krikorian praised the move in a piece for the National Review citing his colleague, Jason Richwine, who resigned from The Heritage Foundation after it was revealed his college dissertation called for limiting immigration based on intelligence.
  • In 2011, Krikorian teamed up with Roy Beck for an event to mark the 10-year anniversary of the 9/11 attacks. 
  • Also in 2011, Krikorian spoke at a CIS press conference along with Senator Jeff Sessions, in which the Alabama Senator thanked the organization for their “invaluable research.” Sessions stated, “I would just say this: You know, any kind of a debate or a discussion like this, most of us don’t have time to go out and crunch the numbers and census data and go through all of this. I just want to thank CIS for providing invaluable research.”

Roy Beck

President and CEO of NumbersUSA

Beck spent years working for John Tanton who named him his “heir apparent,” before founding NumbersUSA in the mid 1990s. Beck has worked for years to make life as difficult as possible for immigrants living in the United States so that they will “self-deport.” He does this by advocating for harsh attrition-through-enforcement policies and dramatic cuts to legal immigration levels. In fact, he has said that the goal should be to “halt all immigration possible.”

  • Roy Beck, who is the author of the book entitled The Case Against Immigration, founded NumbersUSA in 1996. During its fledgling years, NumbersUSA was housed under John Tanton’s U.S. Inc. umbrella. 
  • Beck serves as the group’s president and has sought to popularize an extreme immigration-reduction agenda, most famously through his dehumanizing “gumballs” video and presentations.
  • It directs thousands of calls and emails to members of congress to successfully kill legislation, and seeks to influence primaries in support of nativist candidates and shift the national conversation on immigration to the right—in concert with other members of the organized anti-immigrant movement. Beck and his longtime colleague Rosemary Jenks have sought to build robust relationships with members of congress in order to help scupper any and all immigration reform efforts. 
  • Beck, NumbersUSA and the policies they advocate for have helped to inform the Trump Administration’s actions on immigration.
  • In 2011, Beck joined Mark Krikorian at a Center for Immigration Studies (CIS) event to mark the 10 year anniversary of the 9/11 attacks. 

Anti-immigrant Views

  • Beck served as the former editor of Tanton’s publication The Social Contract.The journal published the work of a number of white nationalists, such as Peter Brimelow, the founder of VDARE. 
  • Beck spoke at multiple events organized by the white supremacist Council of Conservative Citizens in the late 1990s.
  • Beck has led his group’s effort to shrink the immigrant population by attrition through enforcement measures and by radically slashing annual immigration levels.
  • During a 2016 Reddit ask me anything, Beck entertained racist questions and policy proposals, advocated for temporary bans on refugees, slashing legal immigration by 75%, called immigration a “program of forced population growth,” and said, “Refugee resettlement is mainly about some people in rich countries making themselves feel morally superior rather than responding to the greatest needs of the refugees.”
  • Beck has stated that integration of immigrants in Europe is unlikely to be successful “unless they do what the U.S. did in the 1920s.”
  • Beck published a population control paper with fellow immigration restrictionist and immigrant scapegoater Leon Kolankiewicz titled “The Environmental Movement’s Retreat from Advocating, U.S. Population Stabilization (1970–1998): A First Draft of History.”
  • NumbersUSA says “no to immigrant bashing” but Beck bragged about doing his best to make “immigration radioactive in as many places as possible,” and has said that the goal should be to “halt all immigration possible.”
  • Beck, who has advocated against the TPS program for years, has praised the Trump Administration’s decision to terminate protections for many of the program’s hundreds of thousands of recipients, and railed against a court injunction which blocked the Administration from doing so.  
  • In 2008, the NumbersUSA President rejected calls for Haitians to receive TPS after devastating storms ravaged the country. 
  • In August 2019, Beck told The New York Times, that without the funding from Cordelia Scaife May’s Colcom Foundation, his group would “be functioning at a very different level.”

Anti-immigrant Activity

  • NumbersUSA and Beck have spent decades advocating for policies designed to shrink the overall immigrant population in the U.S. 
  • In addition to spending millions of dollars on radio and television ads, from 2001-2018 Beck’s group spent over $7M in lobbying dollars, and from May 2018 to August 2019 the group spent nearly $900,000 on facebook ads attacking immigrants.
  • Like FAIR and CIS, Beck’s group has an unprecedented amount of power and influence over President Trump’s immigration policy, and the results have been disastrous. Perhaps most notably is NumbersUSA’s work advocate for an end to DACA and derail permanent protections for young immigrants. In addition to publicly pressuring President Trump to end the program, NumbersUSA spent over a million dollars working to derail bipartisan talks on protections for these immigrants.
    • Ahead of a vote on H.R. 6, the Dream and Promise Act, NumbersUSA urged its supporters and members of Congress, including some Democrats, to vote against the measure. The group placed Facebook ads targeting a number of moderate Democratic representatives including some freshman members.
  • Beck has publicly supported the strategy led by Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton to sue the Trump Administration over DACA, including in a NumbersUSA newsletter on July 28, 2017, in which he praised what he called the Paxton ultimatum: “Ken Paxton is providing a way for Pres. Trump to finally honor his campaign promises to stop this DACA program for perhaps a million young adult illegal aliens to gain work permits. The Paxton ultimatum gives the President an excuse to reject the advice of his pro-amnesty advisors and to stop issuing work permits that he said as a candidate are unconstitutional.”
  • In 2012, NumbersUSA coordinated with former IRLI lawyer Kris Kobach on the Crane v. Napolitano case,  the suit that pitted ICE against the Obama Administration’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and set the stage for United States v. Texas, and the subsequent legal attacks the program has faced. The same day Kobach filed the lawsuit on behalf of ten Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents, NumbersUSA announced that it would financially support the legal effort against DACA. In a blog post that read more as a fundraising appeal than an announcement, Beck said the ICE agents’ legal team would be “funded entirely by NumbersUSA member contributions.”
  • Beck and his group have used their grassroots network to drive calls and write letters to lawmakers under both the Obama and Trump Administrations, urging representatives to support policies and amendments attached to must-pass bills in the House offered by anti-immigrant representatives like Steve King, Mo Brooks, Paul Gosar and former Rep. and current Sen. Marsha Blackburn. Amendments and other policy proposals have ranged from removing work authorization from DACA recipients to forbidding undocumented immigrants who came to the U.S. at a young age from serving in the military, rescinding the program altogether, deporting DACA recipients, harsh interior enforcement policies, ending birthright citizenship and dramatic cuts to legal immigration.

Kris Kobach

IRLI counsel

The chief legal mind in the anti-immigrant movement, Kobach has used his Ivy League education to draft some of the harshest policies on the books at the federal and local level targeting immigrants and Muslims. Most of these were enacted while he served as of counsel for the Immigration Reform Law Institute (IRLI). Kobach is one of the primary architects behind legal strategies attacking DACA recipients, including Crane v. Napolitano, U.S. v. Texas, and harsh attrition through enforcement policies that have devastated localities and states such as Farmers Branch, Texas and Arizona. Further, Kobach has collected hundreds of thousands of dollars in legal fees defending these harsh immigration laws that he drafts, leaving a plethora of towns with giant fiscal burdens, after legal challenges to the legislation Kobach proposed. 

  • Former Kansas Secretary of State and voting rights restrictionist, Kris Kobach served as counsel to IRLI and the vice-chair of President Trump’s now folded Commission on Election Integrity. He suffered an embarrassing defeat in the 2018 Kansas Gubernatorial race and is a paid columnist for Breitbart. He has co-authored some of the United States’s most draconian and destructive anti-immigrant lawsuits and legislation, and is one of the chief architects of the legal attacks on DACA.
  • Kobach often gets into legal trouble. He frequently loses in court, has violated campaign finance laws and has been fined as a result. His tenure as Vice Chair of the Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity was unceremoniously cut short. Numerous state officials, including Republicans, criticized the commission and its demands, and in January 2018 the Trump Administration dissolved the commission citing “endless legal battles.” 
  • In June 2017 Kobach was fined $1,000 and held in contempt of court for misleading the court and opposing counsel during a lawsuit involving federal voting laws. In U.S. Magistrate Judge James O’Hara’s decision he wrote, “The court agrees that defendant’s deceptive conduct and lack of candor warrant the imposition of sanctions.” 
  • In addition to Kobach’s work for anti-immigrant groups founded by eugenicist John Tanton, he has associated with white nationalists.
  • Not only did Kobach reportedly employ white nationalists on his 2018 Kansas Gubernatorial campaign, he accepted campaign contributions from extremists, including John Tanton’s political action committee U.S. Immigration Reform PAC, former DHS official Ian Smith, who resigned after emails revealed his relationships with white supremacists, and VDARE writer Paul Nachman. In 2016, VDARE founder Peter Brimelow endorsed Kobach for Vice President, and Marcus Epstein, who runs in white nationalist circles, attended a Kobach 2017 Gubernatorial fundraiser in Washington, D.C.
  • Kobach, who has spoken at the Tanton founded The Social Contract Press’s annual Writers’ Workshop, has maligned immigrants and minorities, including on his discontinued radio show.
  • According to Axios, leaked vetting documents for the Trump transition team included “white supremacy” as a vulnerability for Kobach, who was at the time in the running for DHS Secretary. The document cited “accusations from past political opponents that he had ties to white supremacist groups.”
  • Kobach worked for over a decade at IRLI alongside figures such as Ian Smith, Dale Wilcox and John Miano. Later, he teamed up with other anti-immigrant individuals such as Steve Bannon and former Colorado Congressman Tom Tancredo to advise a group called We Build The Wall, Inc., dedicated to privately funding a border wall. 

Anti-immigrant Views

  • Kobach entertained the possibility that Latinx immigrants could conduct “ethnic cleansing” in the U.S. by outnumbering the current white majority, due to what Kobach described as having “a president who disregards the law when it suits his interests.” Kobach continued, “So, while I normally would answer that by saying, ‘Steve, of course we have the rule of law, that could never happen in America,’ I wonder what could happen. I still don’t think it’s going to happen in America, but I have to admit, things are strange and they are happening.”
  • On the Gold Star Khan Family, Kobach stated: “It is maddening to be lectured about our Constitution and about what American law should be by aliens in the United States.”
  • Kobach has advocated for the dismantling of the 14th Amendment, which grants birthright citizenship: “Any justice who sought to come to the conclusion that the Constitution requires citizenship for the children of illegal aliens would have to explain what the words ‘subject to the jurisdiction thereof’ mean, and that’s a very difficult task for them to do.”
  • Kobach helped create the National Security Entry-Exit Registration System (NSEERS), a Muslim registry program launched under the Bush Administration and later disbanded. During the 2016 Presidential transition Kobach told Reuters that he, along with a transition team working group, were considering recommending a reinstatement of the program. 
  • In 2017 Kobach told a group of Republicans gathered at state convention that he had been advising President Trump on methods to overcome federal court rulings blocking the administration’s first executive order related to Muslim Ban.
  • Kobach was critical of the Trump Administration’s decision to allow a small transition period for the hundreds of thousands of TPS holders who have lived in the U.S. for decades. In a November 2017 interview for Breitbart, Kobach opined, “We expected the Trump Administration to return sanity to the TPS program. But, sadly, this recent decision continues the Obama administration’s abuse of the law.”

Anti-immigrant Activity

  • In his role as an advisor to the Trump campaign and the transition team Kobach advised on policies related to a wall along the Southern border, ending DACA and reinstating the NSEERS tracking system. Some of Kobach’s policy recommendations were captured in a photo of a memo he carried into a meeting with Trump, and later confirmed in deposition transcripts. 
  • As part of ongoing litigation over the Trump Administration’s decision to include a citizenship question in the 2020 census, Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross recalled Steve Bannon asking the Secretary if he would be willing to speak to Kobach about ideas on a possible citizenship question on the decennial census. Bannon connected the two men.
  • Kobach, who reportedly lost out on an immigration czar post in the Trump Administration, told the Washington Times that he was actually the one to turn down the position because the job didn’t carry enough weight, and that he continued to “meet regularly with the president to discuss immigration issues.”
  • In his role at IRLI, Kobach wrote legislation and launched lawsuits in Pennsylvania, California, Texas, Missouri, Alabama, and Arizona. Much of this legislation, including Arizona’s S.B 1070, or the “Show Me Your Papers” Law, introduced by Russell Pearce after consultation with Kobach, and signed into law by then-Governor Jan Brewer, has been struck down in court as unconstitutional.
  • In 2006, Kobach helped FAIR’s advisory board member former Rep. Lou Barletta, then the mayor of Hazleton, Pennsylvania, develop his cruel and unsuccessful anti-immigrant policies, which included fining landlords who rented to undocumented immigrants.
  • Former Arizona Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio once hired Kobach to train his law enforcement officers on immigration issues. 
  • Kobach collects hundreds of thousands of dollars in the form of legal fees to defend his draconian laws, even as they bankrupt local economies, crush small businesses, tear apart communities, and cost taxpayers millions.
  • According to the Kansas City Star Kobach “earned more than $800,000 for his immigration work, paid by both towns and an advocacy group, over 13 years.” Below are just a few examples of the costs to cities and states of the policies Kris Kobach worked on:
    • Hazleton, PA, July 13, 2006 – Hazleton took on debt to pay $1.4 million in legal fees and eventually had to file for a state bailout. Former Congressman Lou Barletta worked with Kobach on this legislation while he was mayor of Hazleton.
    • Farmers Branch, TX, 2006 – Farmer’s Branch paid over $7 million in legal fees. Then-Mayor Bob Phelps has since called Kobach’s pitch “a sham,” Phelps stated “It was just a sad situation that we had to go through, and everybody now regrets it.”
    • AZ SB1070, 2010 – According to the Center for American Progress Arizona lost an estimated “$253 million in economic output, $9.4 million in tax revenues, and 2,761 jobs.”
    • AL HB 56, 2011 – Researchers estimated that HB 56 could cost the state nearly $11 billion in lost economic output and as much as $264.5 million in tax revenue.
  • IRLI’s former counsel Kris Kobach helped initiate and draft anti-immigrant lawsuits like Crane v. Napolitano, the suit that pitted ICE against President Obama’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and set the stage for United States v. Texas.
  • Crane v. Napolitano came as a response DACA and was filed on August 23, 2012, in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Texas, on behalf of 10 Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents. Chris Crane, president of the National ICE Council union, served as lead plaintiff and spokesperson for the ICE agents involved in the case.
  • That same day, NumbersUSA announced that it would financially support the legal effort against DACA. In a blog post that reads more as a fundraising appeal than an announcement, NumbersUSA President Roy Beck said the ICE agents’ legal team would be “funded entirely by NumbersUSA member contributions.” Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant announced his state would join Kobach and NumbersUSA’s lawsuit on October 10, 2012.
  • Anti-immigrant leaders once again attempted to use individual states as plaintiffs against former President Obama’s deportation relief programs, as Kobach attempted with Mississippi in Crane, in Texas v. U.S.
  • Just two days after President Obama’s announcement on DAPA and an expansion of the DACA program, The Washington Post reported that then-IRLI lawyer Kris Kobach had stated at a community forum that he had “already begun drafting a suit as the lead attorney, with plans to file it in early December,” and that “Texas is interested in being a plaintiff.” On December 3, 2014, then-Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott filed a lawsuit challenging DAPA and DACA+. From there, the newly elected Attorney General, Ken Paxton, carried out the lawsuit through the U.S. Supreme Court, who agreed to hear the case, but remained divided and gave no decision on the case in a 4-4 tie. 
  • In July 2017 Kobach praised a Texas led strategy which threatened to sue the Trump Administration if they failed to end DACA: “The cases are nearly identical. It’s a clear winner for the states, and I’m very happy Texas has sent this letter.”

Jessica Vaughan

Director of Policy Studies

As director of policy studies for CIS, Vaughan is one of the key figures leading the anti-immigrant movement’s assault on so-called sanctuary cities. In 2015, Stephen Miller praised Vaughan by saying, “There is no one in America who knows more about immigration enforcement…” In 2012 Vaughan spoke at The Social Contract Press’ annual Writers’ Workshop event. The year Vaughan spoke to the workshop, one of her fellow speakers was white nationalist Peter Brimelow, the founder and editor of the racist  website VDARE, a hub for white nationalists and anti-Semites. The Social Contract Press (TSCP) was founded in 1990 by John Tanton, who served as editor for its journal, known for featuring white nationalist writers, and most infamously in 1994 republished an English translation of the openly racist novel The Camp of the Saints.

  • As the director of policy studies for CIS, Vaughan authors and promotes reports filled with blatant anti-immigrant animus and misinformation. Vaughan joined CIS in 1992 and worked alongside a number of longtime CIS staffers and those who have left to join the Trump Administration or other anti-immigrant groups, including, Mark Krikorian, Andrew Arthur, Steven Camarota, Rosemary Jenks, John Miano, Jon Feere and Ronald Mortensen. 
  • Vaughan and CIS  have an unprecedented amount of power and influence over the Trump Administration’s immigration policies, and have provided the framework for the President’s harsh and unpopular immigration measures. Additionally, former CIS staff members have moved into government agencies responsible for implementing immigration policy and several Administration officials have participated in CIS events.
  • In an NPR piece on President Trump’s renewed threats of mass deportation, Vaughan was described as being “in regular discussions with the administration.”
  • On August 15, 2018, then USCIS head Lee Francis Cissna addressed CIS at their “Immigration Newsmaker” event. Cissna was the third Trump Administration official to participate in this series. EOIR’s James McHenry and former ICE Director Thomas Homan were previous speakers. Vaughan was the moderator for two out of three of the events.
  • Vaughan’s group has circulated white nationalist content including VDARE posts thousands of times and has refused to stop doing so. In fact, the group’s executive director, Mark Krikorian has defended sending around articles published by VDARE by comparing it to the New York Times, and counting it as an “important” site for immigration news. 
  • Vaughan’s opinion is regularly sought by anti-immigrant members of Congress, and she often provides testimony at immigration related hearings in front of both the Senate and House of Representatives.
  • Vaughan has cited unverifiable facts from government agencies that go unchecked because they are not available to the public, such as in the case of this 2015 report on Central American minors fleeing violence in the Northern Triangle, in which Vaughan claimed, “According to the DHS statistics, which have not been released to the public, but were obtained by the Center, about ninety-nine percent of all the illegal alien minors taken into ICE custody since the beginning of the fiscal year were apprehended by the Border Patrol.”
  • In 2017, Vaughan traveled to Oregon to address the anti-immigrant group Oregonians for Immigration Reform (OFIR). 

Anti-immigrant Views

  • In January 2017, Vaughan praised Bristol County, Massachusetts Sheriff Thomas Hodgson’s offer to send individuals who were incarcerated to the border to build President Trump’s wall, saying that the plan would put any immigrants in detention “that much closer for deportation.” Vaughan said to the Washington Examiner “Not only that, they can use their new skills to support themselves in their home country.”
  • Vaughan once wrote that the TPS program has contributed to “the burgeoning street gang problem in the United States.”
  • Vaughan has defended Miller from critiques of his anti-immigrant policies.
  • Vaughan has also granted an interview to the antisemitic tabloid American Free Press, founded by Willis Carto, a man who spent five decades on the hate circuit in the United States. 

Anti-immigrant Activity

  • Vaughan and CIS have spread false and misleading information about the DACA program, and long advocated for its repeal which they continued under President Trump. After the Trump Administration rescinded DACA in September of 2017, Vaughan and other CIS spokespeople suggested using the preservation of the DACA program as a trade-off for severely restricting existing legal immigration channels:
  • Vaughan who has sounded the unnecessary alarm over high DACA application approval rates, blamed DACA recipients on processing delays at USCIS during a House Judiciary hearing in July 2019.
  • In CIS’ A Pen and a Phone: 79 immigration actions the next president can take paper, published in April 2016, the group laid out proposals which included calls to track down DACA recipients and require DNA samples for immigration applications.
  • In July 2018, the group filed a lawsuit against USCIS, requesting DACA application data, which the U.S. government promised would not be used for enforcement actions against the program’s recipients.
  • In July 2019, Vaughan penned a fact sheet on H.R. 1044, in which she stated that the bill would “reward” employers who “literally replaced American workers.”
  • In 2008, Vaughan blamed the Temporary Protected Status (TPS) program for allegedly contributing to “the burgeoning street gang problem in the United States,” and in a 2018 op-ed in USA Today, she called for the program to be terminated, “Despite this, some are clamoring for amnesty for TPS grantees. Instead, Congress should let those who qualify adjust to permanent status, and then end the TPS program altogether, so future presidents will have to find less permanent ways to postpone deportations.”
  • Further, in CIS’s “Pen and a Phone” the group called on the next President to terminate “TPS designations that have been in effect for years for several nations, such as El Salvador…” and to issue an “EO directing that no TPS designation may stay in effect longer than one year unless vetted and approved through the National Security Council prior to being extended, and only in a one-year increment.” 
  • Vaughan’s colleagues at CIS including Mark Krikorian and Andrew Arthur are supporters of the  “zero-tolerance” policy which when implemented by the Trump Administration, separated thousands of children from their parents. CIS Fellow, Andrew Arthur called family separation an “absolutely crucial” step to “reducing the flow of parents and their children,” saying “there really is no other choice.” 
  • The group has called for numerous changes to the asylum system such as doing away with protections for children and their families arriving at the border, expanding immigration detention, expedited removal, refusing to release unaccompanied minors to family members who are undocumented unless they surrender themselves for removal proceedings, and restrictions on work authorization for individuals with pending asylum cases.
  • In 2013, Vaughan teamed up with Jeff Sessions and Congressmen including Mo Brooks and Lou Barletta for a teleconference in opposition to the Gang of Eight SB-744 legislation.
  • In recent years, Vaughan has been one of the leading anti-sanctuary activists, producing a map of so-called sanctuary areas but omitting key information on legal issues regarding detainer requests. Vaughan has worked directly with law enforcement and elected officials, including Thomas Hodgson in her home state of Massachusetts in opposing sanctuary legislation. 

Jan Brewer

Former Governor of Arizona

As governor of Arizona, Brewer signed into law one of the harshest pieces of anti-immigrant legislation, SB1070, drafted by IRLI’s Kris Kobach, that prompted a mass economic boycott of her state and multiple lawsuits by civil rights organizations. The former Arizona Governor has argued against the issuance of licenses for DACA recipients and after President Obama announced the program in 2012, Brewer changed the state’s policy, to do just that. The move was met with legal challenges, which Arizona’s Justice Department fought even after Brewer left office.

  • In 2010, then-Governor Brewer signed the Kobach-authored SB 1070 into law. That same year, she spoke at FAIR’s National Board of Advisors Conference. Brewer has remained a staunch supporter of the anti-immigrant movement since leaving office in 2015. 
  • Brewer, who is a devoted supporter of President Trump, and has spoken at his campaign rallies, appeared alongside him and disgraced Sheriff Joe Arpaio in a Hannity segment in 2016. Later that year Brewer confirmed that she had advised the Trump transition team in 2016. The former Governor has repeatedly praised the Trump Administration’s immigration policies, and in April 2019 she defended President Trump’s proposal to place some immigrants in localities they identified as sanctuary cities. In the same month she voiced her support for closing down the Southern border.

Anti-immigrant Views

  • At the signing of SB1070, Brewer said, “We cannot sacrifice our safety to the murderous greed of drug cartels. We cannot stand idly by as drop houses, kidnappings, and violence compromise our quality of life. We cannot delay while the destruction happening south of our border — our international border creeps its way north.”
  • In her memoir which she released in 2017 entitled Scorpions for Breakfast, Brewer defended the unconstitutional law which devastated the state calling it “a fair, effective and necessary response.”
  • In 2016 Brewer dismissed the importance of Latinx voters saying: “They don’t get out and vote.”
  • In 2012, Brewer stated that Maricopa County sheriff, Joe Arpaio has “been very successful.” In 2016, Arpaio and Brewer appeared alongside Trump for a campaign event. 
  • In 2011, Brewer sent out a fundraising email in support of Russell Pearce.

Anti-immigrant Activity

  • In 2010 Brewer signed SB1070 into law. The harsh measure made it a state misdemeanor to be in Arizona without immigration documentation, turned local law enforcement into immigration agents, and enabled racial profiling. The law was met with immense opposition and, in a blow to Brewer, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down three of its four provisions. However, the court’s decision did not deter Brewer from her work to make life as difficult as possible for immigrants in Arizona and throughout the United States.
  • Soon after the Obama administration announced DACA in 2012, Brewer changed the state’s policy to deny driver’s licenses to DACA recipients. The decision was again met with legal challenges and civil rights groups filed suit on behalf of the Arizona DREAM Act Coalition (ADAC) and individual DACA recipients to challenge the policy. Arizona argued that DACA recipients were not authorized to be present in the United States under federal law, and did not meet the state’s driver’s license requirements.
  • After the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals held that Arizona’s policy was preempted by the federal government’s power to classify non-citizens, Arizona asked the Supreme Court to take up the case which would become Brewer v. ADAC. Brewer’s litigation was pursued even after she left office, though in January 2019 Governor Ducey agreed to issue driver’s license to all DACA recipients. In 2017, IRLI submitted a legal brief in support of Brewer on the case.

Steven Camarota

Director of Research

CIS’s longtime director of research produces dozens of reports each year that are routinely cited by anti-immigrant politicians and Trump officials alike. Like his colleagues, Camarota has a history of demonizing immigrants. Camarota helps to craft policy proposals for the group which, according to reporting by Univision, had a hand in drafting the RAISE Act, co-authored by Senator Tom Cotton. Camarota was cited by White House policy advisor Stephen Miller as a top expert on immigration policy at a press conference announcing RAISE's introduction. For years CIS has demanded drastic cuts to legal immigration levels, among other anti-immigrant measures, as a trade for protections for Dreamers.

  • As director of research for CIS, Camarota is responsible for various studies that use dubious sources, manipulate numbers, and distort data to support anti-immigrant policies and positions. Camarota has worked at CIS for approxamately two decades, with staffers such as Rosemary Jenks, Mark Krikorian, Jessica Vaughan, Andrew Arthur, Jon Feere, Ronald Mortensen and John Miano. 
  • Camarota’s writing and Congressional testimony has been republished by The Social Contract Press in its journal which was founded in 1990 by John Tanton. The outlet is known for featuring white nationalist writers, and most infamously in 1994 republished an English translation of the openly racist novel The Camp of the Saints
  • Camarota works for an organization that regularly circulates white nationalist content, and has done so thousands of times. CIS’s executive director has defended circulating content from VDARE, a website that routinely publishes the work of white nationalists and anti-Semities, by comparing it to the New York Times, and counting it as an “important” site for immigration news.
  • Camarota regularly publishes editorials on immigration for National Review, like his colleague, Mark Krikorian. 

Anti-immigrant Views

Anti-immigrant Activity

  • CIS and the group’s staffers such as Camarota have unprecedented influence over the Trump Administration’s immigration policies. In fact, many of their harsh measures can be traced directly back to CIS’s report entitled A Pen and Phone
  • According to NPR, emails obtained during discovery in the Maryland 2020 Census citizenship question lawsuit revealed that Trump Administration officials suggested CIS staff members Mark Krikorian and Steven Camarota be contacted for advice and support.
  • During a White House press conference on The RAISE Act, President Trump’s Senior Advisor Stephen Miller cited Camarota to justify the measure which if enacted, would cut legal immigration levels by one half.
  • Camarota publicly advocated for President Trump to end DACA, and after the program was rescinded, CIS worked to derail bipartisan negotiations in the U.S. Senate on protections for undocumented immigrants who came to the U.S. at a young age.
  • In advocating in August of 2017 for the Trump Administration to end the program, Camarota argued that the program “harms working-class voters,” and subsequently argued that ending DACA would be a boom to native-born residents. 

Dale Wilcox

Executive Director and General Counsel of IRLI

Wilcox spearheads IRLI’s aggressive legal strategy targeting cities and locales that have passed immigrant rights legislation. Like many IRLI lawyers, Wilcox first worked for FAIR before joining its legal arm. Wilcox has called for DACA recipients to “self-deport,” saying, “DACA-pushers missed their mark because the best thing for these ‘kids’ isn’t to stay here and push down blue-collar wages, but to return to Latin America and reform it. Ending DACA will help them deal with what’s really the root of the problem: corruption south of the border.” IRLI has been a driving force behind the legal attacks on undocumented immigrants who came to the U.S. at a young age.

  • Dale L. Wilcox is the executive director and general counsel of IRLI, the former state and local director for FAIR, and former counsel to Judicial Watch.
  • Wilcox has worked with a number of IRLI staffers, both current and those who left to join the Trump Administration, including Kris Kobach, John Miano, Mike Hethmon and Ian Smith. 

Anti-immigrant Views 

  • Wilcox has advocated for harsh attrition through enforcement measures, and as executive director of IRLI has led the organization’s work to make life more difficult for immigrants throughout the United States. In a 2016 press release announcing IRLI’s filing of a motion to intervene and dismiss a lawsuit filed against an Oregonians for Immigration Reform (OFIR)  driven ballot measure in 2014 which overturned an Oregon law to expand drivers licenses to undocumented immigrants, Wilcox stated “Illegal aliens do not have a right to driving privileges, nor do they have a right to travel freely in the U.S. as federal law makes their very presence in the U.S. unlawful.”
  • In a press release announcing IRLI’s decision to sue the Department of State for agency records regarding the names of countries that have allegedly refused to accept the return of their nationals, Wilcox, who often uses hateful rhetoric to describe immigrants derided these nations as “deadbeat nations.” All of the countries the group discussed in the release are in Asia and Africa.
  • In June 2018, Wilcox defended the Trump Administration’s “zero-tolerance” policy in a piece for Breitbart. Wilcox called the international outrage and condemnation of the U.S.’s family separation policy a distraction, and described the thousands of children torn from their parents as a “relatively few children.” 
  • In a 2019 press release announcing IRLI’s submission of a friend-of-the-court brief in support of an Erie County, New York clerk who filed a lawsuit against Gov. Cuomo to defeat the Green Light New York law which grants driver’s licenses to undocumented immigrants in the state, Wilcox, stated, “not only does New York’s Green Light Law turn public officials into criminals, but it also was expressly designed to help illegal aliens take jobs from Americans in New York State.”  

Anti-immigrant Activity

  • His group has helped craft anti-immigrant legislation all over the country, including Arizona’s infamous “self-deportation” measure SB 1070, Alabama’s HB 56 and Georgia’s HB 87
  • Wilcox has led IRLI’s work in defense of the Trump Administration’s harsh immigration policies as they face constitutional legal challenges. The group has filed friend of the court briefs in support of President Trump’s policies including the Muslim Ban, dismantling of asylum law, declaring a national emergency to fund a wall along the Southern border, the 2020 Census citizenship question and ending DACA.
  • On August 29, 2019, the IRLI filed two legal briefs at the U.S. Supreme Court in support of the Trump Administration on DACA litigation. One of the briefs filed on behalf of SaveJobs USA and the Washington Alliance of Technology Workers, challenged work authorization for DACA recipients, while the other one argued that DACA was unlawful.
  • Additionally, IRLI has continued its work to dismantle birthright citizenship, employment based immigration and supported the Georgia higher education system’s decision to deny DACA recipients access to certain universities in the state.
  • The group is one of the primary architects behind the legal attacks on undocumented immigrants who came to the U.S. at a young age. Following the Supreme Court’s failure to reach a majority decision in the U.S. v. Texas case, IRLI issued a press release lauding the outcome, and confirming their behind the scenes work to attack these immigrants: “IRLI advised the Texas Attorney-General’s office on key facets of the case and filed a total of six friend-of-the-court briefs throughout the case’s proceedings.” Wilcox said the group was “honored to have had the opportunity to contribute toward that victory.”

Rosemary Jenks

Director of Government Relations for NumbersUSA

For more than a decade, Rosemary Jenks has walked the halls of Congress, cultivating relationships with elected officials and their staff while lobbying to stifle any proposed legislation that supports immigrant rights or a pathway to citizenship for immigrants. As a former CIS analyst and the director of government relations for NumbersUSA, Jenks has worked for years to make life as difficult as possible for immigrants living in the U.S. and to prevent future entries.

  • Rosemary Jenks is the Director of Government Relations for NumbersUSA. In this role, Jenks serves as a primary link between the anti-immigrant movement’s grassroots base and lawmakers on Capitol Hill.
  • Prior to joining NumbersUSA in 2001, Jenks worked as a senior fellow and legislative analyst for the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS).
  • In her roles at CIS and NumbersUSA, Jenks worked alongside a number of key anti-immigrant figures, including Roy Beck, Mark Krikorian, Jessica Vaughan and Steven Camarota.

Anti-immigrant Views

  • Jenks is not shy about her ties to former Representative Tom Tancredo (R-CO), who previously received support from white supremacist and neo-Nazi groups. At a lobbying event in Washington, which former Rep. Tancredo attended, Jenks announced that if anyone was looking for her, they could find her in the offices of Representative Tancredo, where she and Linda Purdue (who has long worked with Tanton) were “virtual staffers.”
  • In 2006, Jeff Sessions participated in a CIS event featuring Jenks.
  • Jenks is a close associate of anti-Muslim conspiracy theorist Frank Gaffney. Since 2010, Jenks has been a guest on Gaffney’s radio program multiple times. Jenks also contributed to Gaffney’s 2013 book, “War Footing: 10 Steps America Must Take to Prevail in the War for the Free World” and has spoken at multiple events organized by Gaffney’s Center for Security Policy.
  • During a 2010 anti-immigrant rally in Phoenix, Arizona, Jenks lauded former State Sen. Russell Pearce for his efforts to pass Arizona’s bigoted SB 1070. In 2008, she spoke at the Social Contract Press’s Annual Writers Workshop. The Social Contract Press (TSCP) was founded in 1990 by John Tanton, who served as editor for its journal known for featuring white nationalist writers, and most infamously in 1994 republished an English translation of the openly racist novel The Camp of the Saints.

Anti-immigrant Activity

  • Jenks works closely with key anti-immigrant representatives in the House, including Rep. Steve King, Rep. Louie Gohmert, and former Rep. Lamar Smith, and serves as one of NumbersUSA’s main contacts with the U.S. Congress and state legislative officials.
  • In addition to spending millions of dollars on radio and television ads, from 2001-2018 Jenks’s employer spent over $7M in lobbying dollars, and from May 2018 to August 2019 the group spent nearly $900,000 on facebook ads attacking immigrants.
  • NumbersUSA has an unprecedented amount of power and influence over President Trump’s immigration policy, and the results have been disastrous. Perhaps most notably is NumbersUSA’s work to end DACA and derail permanent protections for undocumented immigrants who came to the U.S. at a young age. In addition to publicly pressuring President Trump to end the program, NumbersUSA spent over a million dollars working to derail bipartisan talks on protections for these immigrants.
    • Ahead of a vote on H.R. 6, the Dream and Promise Act, NumbersUSA urged their supporters and members of Congress, including some Democrats to vote against the measure. The group placed facebook ads targeting a number of moderate Democratic representatives including some freshman members.
  • In 2012, NumbersUSA coordinated with former IRLI lawyer Kris Kobach on the Crane v. Napolitano case,  the suit that pitted ICE against President Obama’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and set the stage for United States v. Texas, and the subsequent legal attacks the program has faced. The same day Kobach filed the lawsuit on behalf of the ten Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents, NumbersUSA announced that it would financially support the legal effort against DACA. In a blog post that read more as a fundraising appeal than an announcement, Beck said the ICE agents’ legal team would be “funded entirely by NumbersUSA member contributions.”
  • The group has used its grassroots network to drive calls and send faxes to lawmakers under both the Obama and Trump Administrations, urging representatives to support policies and amendments attached to must-pass bills offered by anti-immigrant Representatives in the House and Senate. Policy proposals have ranged from removing work authorization from DACA recipients to forbidding undocumented immigrants who came to the U.S. at a young age from serving in the military, rescinding the program altogether and deporting DACA recipients to harsh interior enforcement policies such as mandatory e-verify. They have also stridently supported ending birthright citizenship, dramatic cuts to legal immigration, including ending family based immigration, and increased border wall funding.

John Miano

IRLI Legal Counsel and Fellow for CIS

Miano is tied to a number of anti-immigrant groups, serving as a fellow for CIS and as counsel for IRLI. In a 2016 CIS blog, “The Coming End of DACA and DAPA,” Miano, one of the primary architects behind legal strategies designed to dismantle employment authorization channels for immigrants, floated the idea of using contact information provided by DACA applicants to find and deport them. On August 26, 2019, Miano filed a legal brief challenging work authorization for DACA recipients at the U.S. Supreme Court for IRLI, on behalf of SaveJobs USA and the Washington Alliance of Technology Workers.

  • Miano has spent a number of years at both CIS and IRLI, working alongside Mark Krikorian, Kris Kobach, Jessica Vaughan, Steve Camarota, Dale Wilcox, Ian Smith and Ronald Mortensen, among others. 

Anti-immigrant Views

Anti-immigrant Activity

  • Miano who is a constant critic of high skilled immigrant workers and other legal immigration channels is the chief lawyer representing Save Jobs USA and Wash Tech in their lawsuits filed against the Department of Homeland Security during the Obama Administration related to their decision to grant work authorization for spouses of H-1B holders, and extend work permission for some students. Litigation related to these cases has carried over into the Trump Administration.
  • In recent years IRLI has worked to dismantle birthright citizenship, employment based immigration, the DACA and DAPA programs, and supported the Georgia higher education system’s decision to deny DACA recipients access to certain universities in the state.
  • IRLI, an ardent supporter of the Trump Administration, has filed friend of the court briefs in support of many of their policies such as the Muslim Ban, dismantling of asylum law, declaring a national emergency to fund a wall along the Southern border, the 2020 Census citizenship question and ending DACA.

Michael Hethmon

Senior Counsel for IRLI

Hethmon and Kris Kobach were the legal architects behind the anti-immigrant movement’s attrition through enforcement policy - enacting ordinances that make life so difficult for immigrants that they relocate or “self-deport” back to their country of origin. Hethmon calls the harsh attrition through enforcement measures drafted and defended by IRLI “field tests”—experiments to test the legality of different anti-immigrant policies.

  • Michael M. Hethmon is a senior counsel for Immigration Reform Law Institute (IRLI) and a former staff attorney for the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR). IRLI has worked for years to shrink the total immigrant population in the U.S. by supporting legal attacks on states and localities and immigrants around the country, through its attrition through enforcement lawsuits and laws like SB1070 and Alabama’s HB 56.
  • During his time at FAIR and IRLI, Hethmon’s colleagues included Dale Wilcox, John Miano and Ian Smith. 
  • In 2007, Hethmon joined Dan Stein of FAIR and Daryl Metcalfe, founder of State Legislators for Legal Immigration (SLLI) to announce that SLLI would be entering into a “working partnership” with IRLI to create a set of model attrition through enforcement legislation that state legislators across the country could introduce 
  • The legislation would target things like in-state tuition for undocumented students and making the E-Verify program mandatory. 

Anti-immigrant Views

  • At an immigration debate, Hethmon described his support for self-deportation policies: “By making the environment for illegal aliens so inhospitable, especially in economic terms — if you can’t get a job, can’t pay rent — then maybe it’s not the good deal it’s cracked up to be.”
  • Hethmon argues that the United States’ transition to a country where the majority of its citizens are people of color could lead to violence.
  • In an op-ed for CNN in 2010, Hethmon described his work to enact harsh state-based immigration laws like Arizona’s SB 1070 in the hopes of offering model legislation for Congress: “Sink or swim, these new laws are forcing Congress to confront the need for enforcement-based reform. State enactments like SB 1070 will continue to offer Congress models for national legislation and serve as legal antibodies against the fallacy of amnesty.”

Anti-immigrant Activity

  • As senior counsel to IRLI, Hethmon has supported the group in high profile cases of state and local anti-immigrant legislation and lawsuits, and their years long legal attacks on DACA and DAPA. Following the Supreme Court’s failure to reach a majority decision in the U.S. v. Texas case, IRLI issued a press release lauding the outcome, and confirming their behind-the-scenes work to attack these immigrants: “IRLI advised the Texas Attorney-General’s office on key facets of the case and filed a total of six friend-of-the-court briefs throughout the case’s proceedings.”
  • IRLI, an ardent supporter of the Trump Administration, and has filed friend-of-the-court briefs in support of many of their policies such as the Muslim Ban, dismantling of asylum law, declaring a national emergency to fund a wall along the Southern border, the 2020 Census citizenship question and ending DACA.
  • On August 29, 2019, the IRLI filed two legal briefs at the U.S. Supreme Court in support of the Trump Administration on DACA litigation. One of the briefs filed on behalf of SaveJobs USA and the Washington Alliance of Technology Workers, challenged work authorization for DACA recipients, while the other one argued that DACA was unlawful.
  • In recent years IRLI has worked to dismantle birthright citizenship, employment based immigration, the DACA and DAPA programs, and supported the Georgia higher education system’s decision to deny DACA recipients access to certain universities in the state.

Jeff Sessions

Former U.S. Attorney General

Long before he joined the Trump Administration, Jeff Sessions was one of the anti-immigrant movement’s closest allies in the Senate. Sessions was a regular at anti-immigrant gatherings and even received an award from FAIR for his work to derail immigration reform efforts. While Sessions served as the U.S.’s top lawyer, he recommended, implemented, and defended a long list of harsh and unpopular immigration policies - such as the cancelling of DACA, family separation, dismantling the asylum system, defending the Muslim bans and reshaping the immigration courts.

 

  • Former U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions served as one of the organized anti-immigrant movement’s most strident allies during his time in Congress and in the Trump Administration where he served as U.S. Attorney General. 
  • Sessions became Attorney General of Alabama in 1994 and was elected to the Senate in 1996, where he served as chairman of the Senate Subcommittee on Immigration and National Interest from 2015-2017 when he was confirmed as U.S. Attorney General.
  • The former U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Alabama was denied a federal judgeship in 1986 due to racist and derogatory remarks he made to and about African Americans, the NAACP, the ACLU, and the Voting Rights Act. Thomas Figures, a black Assistant U.S. Attorney who had worked for Sessions, testified that the former U.S. Attorney called him “boy” on multiple occasions and joked about the Ku Klux Klan, saying that he thought Klan members were “OK, until he learned that they smoked marijuana.”
  • The former Alabama Senator rose to prominence as an advocate of ruthless immigration enforcement measures, “self-deportation,” drastic reductions in legal immigration, revocation of birthright citizenship and attacks on Dreamers.
  • Several anti-immigrant groups have honored Sessions for his role in obstructing immigration reform legislation in the Senate, and, in an attempt to control the narrative around immigration reform, he often used his position as chair of the Senate Subcommittee on Immigration to invite nativist demagogues to testify before Congress.
  • Sessions received funding from Tanton’s political action committee USIRPAC in 2008 and 2014.
  • He has publicly addressed and received numerous awards from Tanton founded and other extremist groups including FAIR NumbersUSA and Frank Gaffney’s Center for Security Policy.
    • In 2006, Sessions participated in a CIS event featuring Rosemary Jenks of NumbersUSA. 
    • In 2007, after a bipartisan immigration reform plan fell apart, Sessions spoke at a FAIR board meeting, where he thanked them for helping to stir up opposition to the bill and was honored by the group with its “Franklin Society Award.” In 2014, Sessions was commended by the anti-Muslim David Horowitz Freedom Center, and in 2015, the then Senator received the “Keeper of the Flame” award from anti-Muslim conspiracy theorist Frank Gaffney’s Center for Security Policy.
    • Some of these details were omitted from documents he turned over to the Senate Judiciary Committee as part of his U.S. Attorney General confirmation proceedings. Senator Richard Blumenthal questioned Sessions on some of these awards during his confirmation hearing.
    • During a meet-and-greet event at the 2015 CPAC, Sessions publicly praised Gaffney and Rosemary Jenks of NumbersUSA. 
    • In a 2012 floor speech, Sessions commemorated NumbersUSA’s 15th anniversary. In a 2009 press release, the group named Sessions the “No. 1 champion for the American worker on immigration issues.” Just a year earlier in 2008, NumbersUSA awarded Sessions with its Defender of the Rule of Law Award.
    • Sessions has attended FAIR’s annual immigrant bashing “Hold Their Feet to the Fire” event as recently as 2016. The same year, Sessions spoke at a reception at the National Press Club organized by CIS.
    • In 2013, as Congress was considering a bipartisan immigration compromise, Sessions hired then-CIS staff member Janice Kephart as temporary counsel, joined three Republican House members on a CIS teleconference, and spoke alongside Sen. Ted Cruz and Reps Steve King and Mo Brooks at a rally organized by an anti-immigrant front group. Also in 2013, Sheriff Thomas Hodgson participated in a press event organized by Sessions in opposition to S744. 
    • In 2013, the Federation for American Immigration Reform coordinated with sheriffs from around the country to attend their Hold Their Feet to the Fire event and helped to organize a press conference that featured ICE Union President Chris Crane , then-Senator Jeff Sessions and others in order to provide “a critical counter-balancing voice to the Gang of Eight.” Sessions once described Crane as, “a great American.” 

Anti-immigrant Views

  • Jeff Sessions is known for his rejection by the Judiciary Committee for the federal bench and his extreme and unpopular views on immigration and race.
  • Sessions, who announced the Trump Administration’s “zero-tolerance” policy in April 2018, defended the “zero-tolerance” policy which separated children from their parents along the Southern border, by quoting a passage from the bible, and calling the measure “not unusual or unjustified,” saying: “Our policies that can result in short term separation of families is not unusual or unjustified.”
  • During his tenure as U.S. Attorney General, Sessions repeatedly railed against legal immigration, often blaming immigrants for the economic challenges Americans faced. At his swearing in ceremony, Sessions, stated: “We admit a million people a year plus, lawfully, and we need to end this lawlessness that threatens the public safety, pulls down wages of working Americans.” Separately, the then-Attorney General who has often equated immigrants and immigration with crime, called for a “rational immigration flow,” saying: “It is only reasonable that the good and decent people of this country want to end the illegality, create a rational immigration flow, and protect the nation from criminals.” 
  • For years, Sessions has worked to shrink legal immigration levels, including while in the Senate. In 2016, Sessions co-authored a letter to Republicans in which he referred to immigration as a “National Security Issue” which affected “every aspect” of his constituents’ lives and encouraged his party to stop current immigration flows: “This autopilot immigration flow is not only extreme, but ahistorical.”
  • Sessions supports revoking – not just ending – birthright citizenship and in response to 2016 Presidential candidate Trump’s policy proposal to revoke the 14th amendment Sessions said: “This absolutely is not an extreme position.”
  • In October 2016, Sessions told CNN that under a Trump Administration, undocumented immigrants would have to “self-deport,” “But you basically would have to self-deport….Many people that proposed this over the years.”
  • During the 2016 presidential campaign Sessions attempted to minimize the fallout of Trump’s call to ban Muslims from entering the U.S.: “We have a toxic ideology, hopefully very small within Islam…And we need to figure out a better way to identify that.”
  • During a 2006 Senate debate on an immigration bill proposed by then President George W. Bush, Sessions disparaged immigrants from the Dominican Republic: “Fundamentally, almost no one coming from the Dominican Republic to the United States is coming here because they have a provable skill that would benefit us and that would indicate their likely success in our society.”

Anti-immigrant Activity

  • Jeff Sessions has worked for decades to make life for immigrants in the U.S. as difficult as possible, with the goal of shrinking the total immigrant population in the country, including those forced to flee their home countries due to unsafe conditions. As a U.S. Senator, he worked tirelessly to derail comprehensive immigration reform in 2013, and would go on to assist the Trump 2016 presidential campaign in the creation of a dangerous policy framework, which Sessions and President Trump would enact from the White House. 
  • As U.S. Attorney General, Sessions did everything in his power to end DACA, separate families, speed up deportations and dismantle humanitarian protections. In addition to implementing the “zero tolerance policy” which separated thousands of families along the Southern border, Sessions, set arbitrary quotas for immigration judges, and overruled decisions from the Board of immigration Appeals, in order to set up a scenario where as many immigrants were removed from the U.S. as possible. Sessions threatened states and localities he believed would not implement harsh immigration policies, and defended the Trump Administration’s cruel and unpopular measures in court such as the ending of multiple TPS designations, the Muslim bans and the repeal of DACA; a policy which he said the DOJ would take “every lawful measure” to end.
  • Less than two weeks after the repeal of DAPA, Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton and ten other state attorneys general sent a letter to then-U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions threatening to sue the federal government if DACA was not repealed by September 5th. In an interview with Fox and Friends, Sessions seemed to endorse Paxton’s attack on DACA, stating, “I like that states and localities are holding the federal government to account and expecting us to do our responsibility to the state and locals, and that’s to enforce the law.” 
  • During an October 2017 Justice Department Oversight Hearing, Sessions refused to deny that he had any communication with Texas AG Ken Paxton or any other attorneys general who were “threatening to bring a lawsuit to void DACA before the decision was made by Trump Administration.” Sessions claimed that these kinds of conversations were privileged. However, Paxton had already confirmed talks with the Trump Administration earlier in the month. According to deposition transcripts with Sessions’ former Senate staffer, Gene Hamilton, the then-DHS advisor acknowledged he’d been the author of the agency’s memo which repealed DACA. Hamilton also admitted he had spoken with Stephen Miller and John Kelly about ending DACA, and had several conversations with the Texas Attorney General’s office before and after that office led an effort threatening legal action if DACA was not repealed before September 5, 2017. 
  • On September 5, 2017, Sessions announced the repeal of DACA. During his remarks the Attorney General said DACA’s end would “further economically the lives of millions” of Americans. In response to a request of evidence to support this claim, DOJ provided Tanton founded CIS authored reports. In a letter recommending the termination of the program to then-Acting DHS Secretary Elaine Duke, Sessions cited ‘potentially imminent litigation’ as a reason.
  • During remarks at the Heritage Foundation’s Legal Strategy Forum, Sessions criticized legal action taken by states and localities to protect DACA recipients: “As you all know well, some judges have failed to respect our representatives and Congress and the Executive Branch.  One particularly striking example was the federal judge in Brooklyn who heard argument on a challenge to the federal government’s wind down of DACA.”
  • In prior commentary, Sessions had publicly stated “the only thing I can say is what the law says. If you enter the country unlawfully, you are subject to being deported.” During his confirmation hearing to be Attorney General, Sessions, stated in relation to DACA: “The Department of Justice I think would have no objection to have a decision to ban that order because it is very questionable, in my opinion, constitutionally.”
  • As chair of the Senate Subcommittee on Immigration and National Interest, Sessions frequently cited and promoted false statistics and dubious research from CIS, and regularly called the group’s staff to testify at congressional hearings.
  • In 2015, Sessions released his second version of a timeline titled, “How the Obama Administration Bypassed Congress to Dismantle Immigration Enforcement.” Included in the timeline was the Obama administration’s decision to sue Arizona over SB 1070, Alabama over a similar law in 2011, and their announcement of DACA.
  • In June 2017, The United States Department of Justice filed a statement of interest, siding with Texas on SB4 litigation. In a press release announcing the decision, then-U.S. Attorney General said that Texas had admirably followed President Trump’s lead “by mandating state-wide cooperation with federal immigration laws that require the removal of illegal aliens who have committed crimes.” Sessions said in a statement “The Department of Justice fully supports Texas’s effort and is participating in this lawsuit because of the strong federal interest in facilitating the state and local cooperation that is critical in enforcing our nation’s immigration laws.” In his own statement TX Attorney General Ken Paxton thanked the U.S. DOJ for their support on the case and stated: “We look forward to working with DOJ lawyers to see that Senate Bill 4 is fully honored in Texas.”
  • In 2017, Breitbart’s Steve Bannon reportedly joined Stephen Miller, Julie Kirchner and Sessions to assist in the drafting of the RAISE Act, a bill co-authored by Tom Cotton, which, if enacted, would cut legal immigration by 50%. Miller previously worked as an aide to Sessions, along with Gene Hamilton.
  • After a judge ruled to stop the Trump Administration from terminating TPS for select countries, Sessions, who served as Attorney General at the time, heavily criticized the ruling, calling it “judicial encroachment.”

Steve Bannon

Former White House Chief Strategist and Breitbart Executive Chairman

The former Breitbart editor turned Presidential advisor describes himself as a “nationalist,” and is comfortable working with extremists both in the United States and Europe. One of Bannon’s favorite novels, the virulently racist The Camp of the Saints, was republished in English in 1994 by John Tanton’s publishing house The Social Contract Press. According to Cécile Alduy, an expert on the modern French far right, Jean Raspail’s widely denounced book “describes the takeover of Europe by waves of immigrants that wash ashore like the plague.”

  • Steve Bannon, the former Executive Chairman of Breitbart News Network who previously served as then-candidate Trump’s campaign CEO, left his position in the White House as chief strategist and senior advisor to the President in August 2017.
  • Prior to joining the Trump campaign, Bannon used Breitbart as a de facto propaganda outlet for Trump’s presidential run, publishing countless pieces breathlessly praising the candidate and excoriating Trump’s adversaries during the primary campaign. One former Breitbart editor lamented that the outlet turned “into Trump Pravda” under Bannon’s leadership, and became a “go-to website” for supporters of the white supremacist alt-right movement.
  • Bannon recently teamed up with other anti-immigrant individuals such as Kris Kobach and former Colorado Congressman Tom Tancredo to advise a group called We Build The Wall, Inc., dedicated to privately funding the border wall. 

Anti-immigrant Views

  • In an interview with Mother Jones, Bannon boasted that Breitbart is “the platform for the alt-right,” referring to a loosely affiliated faction of racists and white supremacists.
  • Bannon has responded to criticism of his ties to white nationalists, saying, “I’m a nationalist.”
  • The former White House strategist who was one of the Trump Administration’s key architects of both versions of the travel ban restricting entry from Muslim majority countries, previously used a French novel to describe the current refugee crisis, saying, “It’s not a migration. It’s really an invasion. I call it the Camp of the Saints.”
  • On September 7, 2017, Bannon appeared on CBS’s 60 Minutes, where he expressed his disappointment in a tweet by President Trump that showed sympathy for DACA recipients. Bannon said, “the guys in the far right, the guys on the conservative side are not happy with this.” Bannon went on to criticize the Catholic Church over their support for immigrants stating, “They need illegal aliens to fill the churches.”
  • Bannon was a member of the secretive far-right strategy coalition Groundswell. Other members included Mark Krikorian of the Center for Immigration Studies and anti-Muslim conspiracy theorist Frank Gaffney. As Mother Jones has reported, Groundswell is comprised of hard-right leaders who have “been meeting privately since early 2013 to concoct talking points, coordinate messaging, and hatch plans for ‘a 30 front war seeking to fundamentally transform the nation.’”
  • In a March 2016 episode of Breitbart Radio, Bannon said that restoring sovereignty meant reducing immigration, stating, “Twenty percent of this country is immigrants. Is that not the beating heart of this problem?”
  • Breitbart has regularly published articles by anti-Muslim mouthpieces Pamela Geller, Robert Spencer, Brigitte Gabriel, and David Horowitz.

Anti-immigrant Activity

  • In 2017, Bannon reportedly joined Stephen Miller, Julie Kirchner and Jeff Sessions to assist in drafting the RAISE Act, a bill co-authored by Tom Cotton, which, if enacted, would cut legal immigration by 50%.
  • While at Breitbart, Bannon worked to promote misinformation about immigrants, immigration and individuals across the political spectrum who supported sensible reforms to the U.S. immigration system. He carried his goal of halting immigration to the United States with him in his work for the Trump 2016 presidential campaign and into the White House.
  • As part of ongoing litigation over the Trump Administration’s decision to include a citizenship question in the 2020 census, Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross recalled Bannon asking the Secretary if he would be willing to speak to Kobach about ideas on a possible citizenship question on the decennial census. Bannon connected the two men.
  • Some of the other policies Bannon pushed for while in the Trump Administration were captured in a photo of his policy whiteboard in May 2017. Bannon’s immigration pledge board included sunsetting our visa laws, harsh interior enforcement measures, suspending the entry of Syrian refugees, building a wall along the Southern border and terminating DAPA and DACA.
  • In March of 2017, Buzzfeed reported that Bannon had advocated for keeping DACA in place for a short period of time because he saw it as potential leverage for later immigration fights, such as using the threat of ending the program to extract demands for laws and funding to support a ramp up in deportations and possible cuts to legal immigration.
  • Bannon and his protege, Julia Hahn, who is a former staff writer at Breitbart and who followed her former boss to work in the Trump Administration, co-wrote a 2015 hit piece on former Speaker of the House Paul Ryan, in which they attacked the Wisconsin lawmaker for his work on an omnibus bill that included continued protections and work permits for DACA recipients. 

Stephen Miller

White House Senior Policy Advisor and former Communications Director for Senator Jeff Sessions

Donald Trump’s chief immigration advisor has been working with anti-immigrant extremists since he was in high school with the goal of restricting as much immigration to the U.S. as possible. Miller has repeatedly praised and cited the work of anti-immigrant groups and helped to implement their policy recommendations in the Trump Administration, targeting immigrants, refugees and Muslims. According to The New York Times, Miller called the “zero-tolerance” policy that resulted in family separations “a simple decision, ” and in August 2019 the Washington Post reported that he had since continued to defend the measure. In many ways, Miller serves as a bridge between the anti-immigrant movement and the Administration.

  • Stephen Miller, who was one of the first staffers to join the Trump presidential campaign has been railing against immigration and immigrants for decades, and has used his power and influence in the Trump Administration to restrict as much immigration as possible.
  • As White House chief policy advisor, Stephen Miller has been a driving factor behind the Trump Administration’s harsh immigration agenda including the repeal of DACA, the Muslim bans, expansion of public charge, restricting refugee entries, militarization of the border, family separation, cruel asylum policies, and cuts to legal immigration.
  • By bringing Stephen Miller and then- Sen. Jeff Sessions onto his campaign, Donald Trump brought their years-long alliance with anti-immigrant groups who helped to create a dangerous policy framework for the candidate, which included proposals such as ending birthright citizenship, a “total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States,” and the repeal of DACA. This framework would go on to serve as the foundation for the Trump Administration’s actions on immigration.
  • During his time in the White House, Miller has enlisted his alliance with anti-immigrant groups in order to force manufactured crises, in an effort to make life miserable for immigrants in the U.S..
  • Before joining the Trump campaign as an advisor in January of 2016, Miller worked for Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL) and former Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN), who brought him on as press secretary shortly after an interview when she learned they were reading the same anti-Muslim book.
  • As one of Sessions’s and then Trump’s most trusted policy advisors, Miller has played a significant role in influencing opposition to bipartisan immigration measures including protections for Dreamers and TPS holders and the “Gang of Eight” bill in 2013.
  • Miller began his relationship with racist extremists at a young age and according to Haaretz, anti-Muslim speaker David Horowitz served as Miller’s mentor during college and introduced him to Jeff Sessions.
  • While still in high school, Miller helped bring Horowitz to speak at his school and published several pieces decrying so-called liberal indoctrination for the Horowitz-published FrontPage Magazine.
  • Miller would go on to attend Duke University where he met white nationalist leader Richard Spencer.

Anti-immigrant Views

  • During a March 2016 episode of a Breitbart radio program with Stephen Bannon, Miller called for an “immigration-off period.”
  • Miller reportedly told a communications aide: “I would be happy if not a single refugee foot ever again touched America’s soil.”
  • During his time at Duke, Miller authored several controversial op-eds claiming that former Sen. Ted Kennedy was “a traitor” for opposing torture, and that multiculturalism is akin to “segregation.”
  • While at Duke, Miller and Richard Spencer, who would go on to become a white nationalist leader, invited VDARE founder Peter Brimelow to speak at the university.
  • At a May 2015 awards ceremony hosted by CIS and honoring Breitbart reporter Neil Munro, Miller, who was a keynote speaker, praised Munro, CIS’s Jessica Vaughan, and Steven Camarota. Camarota, for his part, has also praised Miller, notably in a Washington Post interview in August of 2019. 

Anti-immigrant Activity

  • As the Trump Administration’s chief policy advisor, Stephen Miller has been a driving factor behind President Trump’s harsh immigration agenda including the repeal of DACA, the Muslim bans, public charge, reduction in refugee cap, the border wall and family separation at the Southern border. According to The New York Times, Miller, who helped devise “zero-tolerance” with then-Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Gene Hamilton, called the policy that resulted in children being ripped from their parents “a simple decision.”
  • According to current and former Trump Administration officials, Miller is “obsessed” with ramping up deportations. One former official told the Washington Post Miller “is singularly focused on how to get people out of the country.” 
  • Before joining the Trump campaign, and serving as chief policy advisor to President Trump, Miller, supported Sessions’ efforts in the U.S. Senate to derail bipartisan immigration reform and to make life for immigrants living in the U.S. as difficult as possible. 
  • One of the ways Miller has been able to push the President to adopt so many harsh and unpopular immigration policies is through the political appointees he has placed at agencies across the administration including at DHS and the DOJ. According to the Washington Post Miller has placed calls at DHS and other agencies, where he gives “orders to employees several layers beneath the Cabinet secretaries.”
  • In addition to pushing President Trump to end protections for DACA recipients, he attempted to leverage their safety for cuts to legal immigration, humanitarian protections and harsh interior enforcement measures. 
  • As part of his goal of ending immigration into the U.S., Miller helped to devise the RAISE Act,  along  with Steve Bannon, Julie Kirchner and Jeff Sessions, according to reports. The RAISE Act, a bill co-authored by Tom Cotton which if enacted would cut legal immigration by 50%.
  • One of Miller’s top priorities is pushing through a harsh public charge rule. According to the New York Times, he told high level officials that they “ought to be working on this regulation all day every day. It should be the first thought you have when you wake up. And it should be the last thought you have before you go to bed. And sometimes you shouldn’t go to bed.” 
  • The continued chaos that has marred the Trump Administration’s immigration policy, is evident not only in the measures they have adopted but in the constant staff turnover within leadership positions at DHS and DOJ. One of the more recent “purges” took place in the spring of 2019, and was reportedly related to Miller’s impatience with the rule making process delaying the implementation of the public charge measure.
  • The former Sessions staffer played a role in pushing through the first version of the Trump Administration’s Muslim ban, which also saw the refugee program suspended indefinitely.
  • Similarly, the chief policy advisor is partly responsible for the dramatic decrease in the annual number of refugees the U.S. accepts – which is at its lowest level in 30 years.
  • Like many in the organized anti-immigrant movement, Miller has worked to demonize and criminalize immigrants and immigration. The New York Times wrote in 2019, “Immigrant crime would be a running theme in Mr. Miller’s career, and his emphasis on the issue borrowed from the broader restrictionist movement.” Miller was a catalyst behind the Trump Administration’s VOICE program and according to Politico, during one internal meeting, a former National Security Council official recalled Miller saying “We must save Americans from these immigrant criminals!” 

Julie Kirchner

CIS Ombudsman and former FAIR Executive Director

Kirchner was among the first staffers of anti-immigrant groups to join the Trump Administration, and would go on to take up the powerful role of Citizenship and Immigration Services Ombudsman after spending almost a decade at FAIR. As Citizenship and Immigration Services Ombudsman, Julie Kirchner is reportedly working against the mission of her office to assist individuals and employers in resolving problems with USCIS. In addition to high staff turnover, her office has reportedly faced backlogs in assisting individuals with casework, and has failed to address systemic concerns raised by employees and outside stakeholders. Her agency’s failure to adequately address the needs of legal immigrants in the U.S. is unsurprising, considering she moved into the Administration from FAIR - an organization dedicated to shrinking immigration as much as possible. In February 2019, House Oversight Chairman Elijah Cummings sent Kirchner a letter requesting information pertaining to case backlogs as well as any communications she or her staff may have had about FAIR or with FAIR employees.

  • Julie Kirchner joined FAIR as its government relations director in 2005. She was promoted to executive director in 2007, served in that role alongside President Dan Stein until August 2015, and joined the Trump campaign shortly afterwards. Other FAIR staff members she worked with included Robert Law, Elizabeth Jacobs, and John Zadrozny.
  • Kirchner worked briefly as a high-level advisor at CBP in early 2017 before taking up her position as Citizenship and Immigration Services Ombudsman. She is one of a number of former FAIR staffers who have moved into the Trump Administration. While commenting on FAIR’s newfound influence, Kirchner’s former boss Dan Stein,  who once posed the idea of prioritizing reproduction based on intelligence, stated that he was “surprised they haven’t hired more people out of the stable of our organization.”
  • During Kirchner’s tenure, FAIR worked to torpedo immigration reform efforts at every turn, advocate for harsh attrition through enforcement measures at the federal level and in states and localities, and regularly welcomed known racists to its annual events.

Anti-immigrant Views

  • As Executive Director of FAIR, Kirchner oversaw their legislative efforts and served as one of the group’s primary lobbyists. According to federal lobbying disclosure paperwork and congressional testimony, she advocated to slash legal immigration levels and eliminate birthright citizenship. 

Anti-immigrant Activity

  • In 2007 Congressional testimony Kirchner called for immigration cuts and fretted about human “sprawl.” Kirchner stated, “As we spread out, our sprawl consumes land, water, and habitats, all the while creating a rising outflow of environmental waste…As the rate of immigration grows without limit, so does development and the impact on our environment. America simply cannot sustain perpetual growth in finite places with limited resources. Our immigration policy must recognize this truth.”
  • During her short stint at CBP, Kirchner reportedly joined Miller, Bannon and Sessions to assist in the drafting of the RAISE Act, a bill co-authored by Tom Cotton, which, if enacted, would cut legal immigration by 50%.

Jon Feere

Adviser at Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE)

Jon Feere left Center for Immigration Studies (CIS), where he had been working since 2002, to take an advisory role at ICE in 2017. Feere routinely circulated extremist content on Twitter and once went as far as to grant an interview to an openly anti-Semitic tabloid. In 2012, Feere gave an interview to the anti-Semitic newspaper, American Free Press (AFP). AFP once promoted a book titled The Holocaust Hoax Exposed: Debunking the 20th Century’s Biggest Lie.

  • Jon Feere is an adviser at Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and previously worked as a legal policy analyst for CIS, where he worked alongside Mark Krikorian, Jessica Vaughan, Steven Camarota, John Miano and Ronald Mortensen. 
  • Before former Acting ICE Director Thomas Homan departed the agency, he recommended the family separation policy which the United Nations Human Rights Council said “may amount to torture.” Feere served as an advisor to Homan during this time.
  • Feere is one of a number of CIS and FAIR employees that have taken up positions within the Trump Administration, where they have worked to enact harsh immigration policies such as family separation at the border.
  • While at CIS, Feere authored reports and provided testimony to Congress advocating for abolishing the 14th Amendment, as well as harsh attrition through enforcement policies.

Anti-immigrant Views

  • In a 2014 blog post Feere questioned the ability of Dreamers to serve faithfully in the military.
  • Included in an August 2019 New York Times profile on Stephen Miller’s influence over the Trump Administration’s immigration policies, is Feere’s depiction of Latinx people as a supposed electoral threat: “If four out of five Latinos are registering with the Democrats, perhaps less immigration would be in the interest of the Republican Party, no?” 
  • In an August 2015 op-ed for The Hill, Feere proposed various avenues for Trump to end birthright citizenship, including a legislative option and executive action. President Trump has since proposed dismantling the 14th Amendment.
  • Feere has promoted the work of the racist site VDARE on his Twitter account.

Anti-immigrant Activity

  • Feere and CIS have for years pushed for harsh attrition through enforcement policies that are designed to shrink the total immigrant population in the U.S. and prevent future individuals from coming.  
  • Like Feere’s former colleagues at CIS, the ICE advisor advocated for holding protections for undocumented immigrants who came to the U.S. at a young age hostage in exchange for harsh enforcement policies. In a blog for CIS, Feere suggested that deporting Dreamers’ parents should be a prerequisite in any deal which provided them legal status: “It would seem that the advocates would require the deportation of the parent as a prerequisite for the child receiving amnesty. Anything less would amount to the parent also receiving amnesty, rendering pointless the entire discussion about moral and legal culpability of the children.”

Ken Paxton

Texas Attorney General

Ken Paxton has used his position as Attorney General of Texas to lead state-level attacks on DACA. On May 1, 2018, Texas and six other states filed a lawsuit to end DACA, seeking a nationwide injunction against renewals. In a press release announcing the actions, Paxton defended the Trump Administration, instead blaming continued renewals of the program on the nationwide injunctions to halt its dismantling. This followed Paxton’s confirmation that he had conversations with the Trump Administration, including the Department of Justice about the repeal of DACA.

  • Paxton has led the charge nationally to end DACA and expel hundreds of undocumented immigrants who came to the U.S. at a young age, many of whom live in Texas.

Anti-immigrant Views

  • While Paxton has feigned a lack of interest in physically deporting current DACA recipients, he is aware that if the Administration were to end DACA, recipients would unquestionably be at immediate risk of deportation.
  • Paxton has been vocal about his opposition to every major component of the DACA program.
  • In an effort to minimize fallout over several lawsuits challenging SB 4, a harsh attrition through enforcement measure signed into law in May 2017, Paxton filed a lawsuit the very same day, requesting a federal court declare the new law constitutional. Unsurprisingly, anti-immigrant group FAIR wrote in its annual report that it had “provided anti-sanctuary bill ideas to staff for Texas State Senator Charles Perry, whose measure (SB 4) was signed into law by Governor Abbott.” 
  • In June 2017, The United States Department of Justice filed a statement of interest, siding with Texas on SB 4 litigation. In a press release announcing the decision, former U.S. Attorney General Sessions said that Texas had admirably followed President Trump’s lead “by mandating state-wide cooperation with federal immigration laws that require the removal of illegal aliens who have committed crimes.” Sessions said in a statement, “The Department of Justice fully supports Texas’s effort and is participating in this lawsuit because of the strong federal interest in facilitating the state and local cooperation that is critical in enforcing our nation’s immigration laws.” In his own statement Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton thanked the DOJ for its support on the case and stated: “We look forward to working with DOJ lawyers to see that Senate Bill 4 is fully honored in Texas.”
  • On March 13, 2018, the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the majority of the provisions of SB 4 could go into effect, only blocking a piece of the measure which did not allow elected officials to criticize or speak favorably about limiting immigration enforcement. However, the provisions that were not struck down allow local law enforcement to inquire about the immigration status of a detained person and mandates that all ICE detainers be honored.  
  • In the summer of 2018, Paxton refused to condemn the Trump Administration’s policy of separating families, saying it was President Trump’s job “to enforce the law, not to make it up. What he’s doing is securing the border, just like he said he’d do.” 
  • In an October 2018 interview on Fox News, Paxton said that he supported President Trump’s proposal to end birthright citizenship: “You create an incentive for somebody to cross the border, have a baby and suddenly they’re a citizen. It doesn’t make any sense and I’m glad the president’s taking a look at this and considering this option.”

Anti-immigrant Activity

  • In addition to making life as difficult as possible for immigrants in Texas, Paxton has helped to lead the charge in ending DACA and deporting Dreamers.
  • Texas led the opposition against President Obama’s 2014 executive actions on immigration through DHS, which in addition to expanding the DACA program would have protected the undocumented parents of U.S. citizens and permanent residents from deportation and allowed them to work legally. 
  • Just two days after President Obama’s announcement on DAPA and DACA+, The Washington Post reported that then-Immigration Reform Law Institute (IRLI) lawyer Kris Kobach had stated at a community forum that he had “already begun drafting a suit as the lead attorney, with plans to file it in early December,” and that “Texas is interested in being a plaintiff.” On December 3, 2014, then-Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott filed a lawsuit challenging DAPA and DACA+. From there, the newly-elected Attorney General, Ken Paxton, carried out the lawsuit.
  • After the U.S. Supreme Court allowed an injunction against the DAPA and DACA+ programs to remain in place in June 2016, IRLI, the legal arm of flagship anti-immigrant group FAIR, announced it had “advised the Texas Attorney-General’s office on key facets of the case.”
  • In June of 2017, Paxton lead ten Republican state attorney generals in threatening to amend their pending DAPA lawsuit to sue over DACA 2012 unless President Trump ended the program by September 5, 2017.
  • During an October 2017 Justice Department Oversight Hearing, Sessions refused to deny that he had any communication with Texas AG Ken Paxton or any other attorneys general who were “threatening to bring a lawsuit to void DACA before the decision was made by Trump Administration.” Sessions claimed that these kinds of conversations were privileged; however, Paxton had already confirmed talks with the Trump Administration earlier in the month.
    • According to deposition transcripts with Gene Hamilton, the then-DHS advisor acknowledged he’d been the author of the agency’s memo which repealed DACA, and had had several conversations with the Texas Attorney General’s office, including Ken Paxton himself, before and after that office led an effort threatening legal action if DACA was not repealed before September 5, 2017. 
  • In an op-ed for USA Today entitled: Donald Trump Should Keep his Promise to Dump DACA, Paxton again challenged the President over his decision to keep the program in place: “We’ve given the Trump Administration until September 5 to agree to phase out DACA. Otherwise, our lawsuit challenging unlawful deferred-action programs currently pending in district court will be amended to challenge the renewal or issuance of any new DACA permits in the future.”
  • And in a letter to the editor addressed to the Wall Street Journal, Paxton attempted to defend his attack on DACA by drawing comparisons between DACA 2012 and DAPA: “DACA is exactly like DAPA and needs to be phased out to preserve the rule of law and constitutional separation of powers.”

Greg Abbott

Texas Governor

Texas Governor Greg Abbott has openly targeted immigrants in his state during his tenure, most notably seeking to dismantle DACA and ending his state’s refugee resettlement program. After working to block DAPA and an expanded version of DACA in 2014, Abbott signed SB 4 into law in Texas in 2017.

  • Abbott has made immigration crackdowns a key part of his agenda both as Texas Attorney General and as the state’s governor. In addition to Abbott and current Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton’s legal attacks on DAPA and DACA, the Texas politician withdrew the state from the federal refugee resettlement program in 2016, forcing agencies to negotiate directly with the federal government for funding, and signed into law SB4; the harsh interior enforcement immigration measure which has been compared to Arizona’s SB 1070.
  • The Texas Justice department is behind many of the legal attacks on DACA and Dreamers, and in October 2017, Ken Paxton admitted to having had conversations with the Trump Administration, including the Department of Justice about ending DACA.

Anti-immigrant Views

  • Governor Abbott complained about a Supreme Court decision which found denying public education to K-12 students based on their immigration status unconstitutional. In August 2019, Abbott complained about the decision on Twitter saying: “5 liberals on the Supreme Court ruled that Texas had to provide and fund public education for illegal immigrants. The next decade, in Texas v. U. S., Federal courts rejected our lawsuit that the federal government should pay for that education cost.”
  • In June 2018, Gov. Abbott defended President Trump’s policy of separating children from their parents, and instead blamed Democrats in Congress for the humanitarian crisis while speaking with a local news network. The Governor followed this with a letter to the Texas delegation putting the responsibility on them, rather than calling on the Trump Administration to end the manufactured crisis it had started.
  • According to a 2019 fundraising letter brought to light by the Texas Signal and the Texas Tribune, Abbott called on Republicans to “defend” Texas against undocumented immigrants crossing along the U.S.-Mexico border: “Unless you and I want liberals to succeed in their plan to transform Texas — and our entire country — through illegal immigration, this is a message we MUST send.” The letter was sent to his supporters just one day before the massacre in El Paso, Texas when a gunman who targeted Latinx people opened fired at a Walmart, killing twenty-two people.
  • The Texas Governor pushed for increases in harsh and unpopular measures such as the border wall by misrepresenting immigrants as criminals. In 2014, Abbott wrongly claimed that 3,000 murders had been conducted by undocumented immigrants in Texas due to lax border control. 
  • In 2019, Governor Abbott stood behind a botched voter purge that incorrectly claimed 95,000 non-citizens were registered to vote, a claim widely debunked and has previously called voter fraud an “epidemic.” 

Anti-immigrant Activity

  • In 2016, Gov. Abbott withdrew Texas from the federal refugee program after he unsuccessfully sued to keep Syrian refugees out of Texas. Following President Trump’s Muslim ban, which included restrictions on refugee entry, the state’s resettlement efforts have dwindled.
  • In May 2017, Governor Abbott signed S.B.4 into law via Facebook Live. The law, which is widely considered one of the harshest state immigration laws currently on the books, will allow law enforcement officials to inquire about a person’s immigration status when they are held for any legal detention, including a routine traffic stop. The Texas Conference of Catholic Bishops strongly opposed the bill and, prior to its signing, called on the Governor to veto it.
  • Abbott and Ken Paxton have spent years launching legal attacks on the DACA program, and its recipients, in an attempt to have the program deemed unconstitutional by the U.S. Supreme Court and to expel Dreamers from the U.S.
  • Just two days after President Obama’s announcement on DAPA and an expansion of the DACA program, The Washington Post reported that then-IRLI lawyer Kris Kobach stated at a community forum that he had “already begun drafting a suit as the lead attorney, with plans to file it in early December,” and that “Texas is interested in being a plaintiff.” On December 3, 2014, then-Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott filed a lawsuit challenging DAPA and DACA+. From there, the newly elected Attorney General, Ken Paxton, shepherded the lawsuit to the U.S. Supreme Court, which agreed to hear the case, but remained divided and gave no decision on the case in a 4-4 tie. 
  • In June 2017, President Trump rescinded the DAPA memo. Abbott’s Attorney General Ken Paxton thanked President Trump, but swiftly threatened that the United States should also rescind the DACA program or he might amend the U.S. v. Texas case to make the DACA program and its constitutionality its central question. A few months later in September 2017, Trump repealed the 2012 DACA program as well, citing legal vulnerabilities. After several federal courts barred the Trump Administration from ending the program, Texas filed a lawsuit in Judge Andrew Hanen’s court seeking a nationwide injunction against DACA renewals in May 2018. 
  • IRLI is one of the primary architects behind the legal attacks on undocumented immigrants who came to the U.S. at a young age and the DACA program. Following the Supreme Court’s failure to reach a majority decision in the U.S. v. Texas case, IRLI issued a press release lauding the outcome, and confirming its behind-the-scenes work to attack these immigrants: “IRLI advised the Texas Attorney-General’s office on key facets of the case and filed a total of six friend-of-the-court briefs throughout the case’s proceedings.” It has been reported that Kris Kobach who worked for IRLI for a number of years was a close ally of both Ken Paxton and Greg Abbott, the key players in the U.S. vs Texas case. 

Steve King

Congressman (R-IA 4th District)

Rep. Steve King is the most outspoken member of Congress who opposes immigration, using the House floor and social media to attack immigrants who he repeatedly claims are a threat to Western civilization. King’s views have become so extreme that his rhetoric is indistinguishable from that of white nationalists. King, who toasted on Twitter to reports of the first DACA recipient being deported under the Trump Administration, was stripped of his committee assignments in January 2019, following an interview with The New York Times in which he stated: “White nationalist, white supremacist, Western civilization — how did that language become offensive?”

  • Congressman Steve King of Iowa is one of the most vocal proponents of deporting undocumented immigrants in the House of Representatives.
  • For years, King has espoused extreme and false far-right beliefs about immigrants and minorities, has associated with Nazi-founded European political parties like the Austrian Freedom Party, and has worked to derail immigration reform bills with groups founded and funded by eugenics proponent John Tanton.
  • Rep. King’s rhetoric has become increasingly explicit in recent years, and have even drawn criticism from individuals within his own party.

Anti-immigrant Views

  • According to the Des Moines Register, King stated that “there’s nothing cruel” about the Trump Administration’s family separation policy and the detention conditions of children separated from their families.
  • Following King’s defense of white nationalism and white supremacy in January 2019, the Iowa Congressman was stripped of his committee assignments and denounced by many, including the National Review, which called on conservatives to “Dump Steve King.”
  • This was not the first time King espoused racist beliefs; in fact, this trend has continued for a number of years. 
    • In December 2017, King exclaimed to Breitbart News’ Whatever It Takes radio host Curt Schilling that there is “a pejoraty [sic] against white people in America. It’s an anti-white, anti-Western civilization culture that they are fostering.”
    • In July 2016, King posed the following question to MSNBC host Chris Hayes: “Where did any other sub-group of people contribute more to civilization… than white people?”
    • In December 2017, King celebrated President Trump’s inauguration with then-Congresswoman Marsha Blackburn and the Austrian Freedom Party, which was founded by Nazis in 1956.
    • In a 2017 tweet, King praised the nationalist Dutch politician Geert Wilders and echoed remarks the Iowa Congressman had made to MSNBC host Chris Hayes in 2016: “Wilders understands that culture and demographics are our destiny. We can’t restore our civilization with somebody else’s babies.”
    • Following backlash surrounding these comments King doubled down defending his tweet on Breitbart radio: “We’re watching as Western civilization is shrinking in the face of the massive, epic migration that is pouring into Europe. That’s the core of that tweet. They’re importing a different culture, a different civilization — and that culture and civilization, the imported one, rejects the host culture. And so they are supplanting Western civilization with Middle Eastern civilization and I say, and Geert Wilders says, Western civilization is a superior civilization — it is the first world.”
    • The Republican Congressman has recommended and praised the racist “The Camp of the Saints” novel, which Tanton republished through The Social Contract Press.
  • King has characterized Dreamers as drug runners: “For everyone who’s a valedictorian, there’s another 100 out there that weigh 130 pounds and they’ve got calves the size of cantaloupes because they’re hauling 75 pounds of marijuana across the desert.” Later on in the interview, King claimed that undocumented immigrants who came to the U.S. at a young age were “undermining our culture and civilization.”
  • King openly associates with the anti-immigrant lobby, including his frequent attendance at FAIR’s annual “Hold Their Feet to the Fire” event.
  • In 2013, as Congress was considering a bipartisan immigration compromise, King appeared at a rally with NumbersUSA executive director Roy Beck. Also in 2013, he spoke alongside Sen. Cruz, Sen. Sessions and Rep. Brooks at a rally organized by an anti-immigrant front group. King also spoke at a CIS event in 2011 and in 2013 he spoke alongside Rosemary Jenks of NumbersUSA.
  • King was a recipient of funding from Tanton’s political action committee USIRPAC in almost every election from 2002 through 2018.

Anti-immigrant Activity

  • In addition to espousing racist beliefs and making other racist remarks about immigrants and minorities, King has propped up his ideology with policy proposals that include harsh interior enforcement measures, dismantling birthright citizenship, imposing e-bonds, toughening penalties for unauthorized reentry, withholding federal funds from “sanctuary cities,” building a wall along the Southern border, and ending DACA and deporting Dreamers.
  • King has met with President Trump to discuss immigration topics including King’s e-bonding bill – HR 6089. Additionally, in 2017, King met with then-DHS Secretary John Kelly to consider border security measures showcasing a model for a border wall. In the past, King has suggested electrifying parts of the wall along the Southern border.
  • From the announcement of the program in 2012, King has led the charge against DACA in the House.
  • In addition to his repeated mischaracterization of the majority of Dreamers as criminals, the Iowa Congressman has introduced a number of amendments to must-pass bills such as the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) and the DHS Appropriations bills that would have made life exponentially more difficult for DACA recipients:
    • In June 2013, King introduced an amendment to the DHS Appropriations Act that would have prohibited the use of funds to process DACA applications.
    • In June 2016, King attempted to attach two amendments to the NDAA, both of which were designed to prohibit Dreamers from serving in the military. These were ultimately rejected, and on the one which was given a vote, 33 Republicans voted against it.
    • In the summer of 2014, he voted with Reps. Blackburn and Barletta to pass a bill that would have halted DACA.
    • In 2018, King teamed up with Immigration Reform Law Institute (IRLI) and five other Members of Congress, including Representatives Paul Gosar, Andy Biggs, Louie Gohmert, Thomas Massie and Ralph Norman, to file an amicus brief in support of the state of Texas for its lawsuit seeking to eliminate DACA. IRLI filed the brief on behalf of the Congressmen. 
    • In February 2019, on behalf of King and Rep. Gosar, IRLI filed an additional brief.
  • In 2018, ProEnglish held a legislative briefing with King to promote the English Language Unity Act. 

Ted Cruz

U.S. Senator (R-TX)

Ted Cruz

Connections

Senator Ted Cruz previously was in favor of a pathway to legalization for undocumented immigrants, but in recent years his views have radicalized and he has publicly called for the DACA program to be scrapped. He has participated in events organized by anti-immigrant groups. During a campaign stop in 2016, Cruz berated a DACA recipient who shared her story with the Senator: “I would note, if you’re a DACA recipient it means that you were brought here illegally, and violating the laws has consequences.”

  • Senator Cruz was elected to the Senate in 2012 with the support of the Tea Party.
  • Prior to being elected Texas’s junior U.S. Senator, Cruz served as the state’s Solicitor General. Two of his mentees in the solicitor general’s office, Chip Roy and Scott A. Keller, spearheaded many of the legal attacks on Dreamers and Obama Administration immigration policies, including U.S. v Texas.
  • Senator Cruz has aligned himself with anti-immigrant groups as they’ve attacked commonsense immigration reform and DACA recipients, and has used their misleading and false reports as sources.
  • In 2013, Senators Cruz and Sessions, and Reps. King and Brooks spoke at a rally organized by an anti-immigrant front group. Cruz’s policies are in lockstep with FAIR and its congressional allies, and during the 2016 presidential race he bragged about defeating comprehensive immigration reform with Senator Sessions.
  • In 2015, former FAIR staffer John Zadrozny joined Senator Ted Cruz’s team as counsel and then joined Trump’s State Department after he took office. 

Anti-immigrant Views

  • In previous years, Cruz was open to providing a path to legalization for undocumented immigrants and supported expanding legal immigration. But in an attempt to compete with then-candidate Donald Trump’s extreme views on immigration policy during the 2016 presidential race, he quickly abandoned some of his earlier positions and matched his rival’s calls to end birthright citizenship, “freeze” legal immigration channels and enact mass deportation. His immigration positions since have only become more extreme.
  • In an October 2018 interview with the Texas Tribune, Sen. Cruz doubled down on his opposition to birthright citizenship, saying, “Virtually every country on Earth doesn’t allow children of those there illegally to become citizens automatically, that isn’t a policy that makes any sense.”

Anti-immigrant Activity

  • In January of 2018, as the Senate was debating protections for DACA recipients, Senator Cruz attacked his fellow Republican members of Congress for working on the bipartisan measures saying, “at the time virtually every Republican denounced executive action as unconstitutional, as lawless, as wrong, and yet today far too many Senate Republicans are staking out a place well to the left of President Obama, it’s almost as if elections don’t penetrate. We need to be listening to the voters. I do not know a single Republican, not one in this body, not one in the House of Representatives, who was elected on a promise of: I will go to the left of Barack Obama on immigration.”
  • In 2014, Cruz stated that ending DACA was a “top priority.” He introduced the Protect Children and Families Through the Rule of Law Act, S.2666, which would have defunded DACA. It died in the Senate but a similar bill, H.R.5272, offered by Rep. Blackburn, passed the House by recorded vote on August 1, 2014.
  • In June 2018, Cruz defended the Trump Administration’s family separation policy calling it “inevitable.”
  • Cruz, breaking with some of his Republican colleagues in TX, offered an endorsement of President Trump’s first Muslim ban and berated then Acting Attorney General Sally Yates for her opposition to the ban, calling her position “arguments that we can expect litigants to bring — partisan litigants who disagree with the policy decision of the president.”

Louie Gohmert

Congressman (R-TX 1st District)

Rep. Louie Gohmert has a history of trafficking in anti-immigrant conspiracy theories and has attended a number of events hosted by extremist groups during his time in office. In July 2010, Rep. Gohmert offered up his “terror babies” conspiracy theory on the floor of the House, claiming that “[terrorists] would get [pregnant women] into the United States to have a baby… then they would turn back where they could be raised and coddled as future terrorists… and then one day, twenty, thirty years down the road, they can be sent in to help destroy our way of life.” The following year CIS attempted to add an academic veil to this theory in a report entitled: “Birthright Citizenship for the Children of Visitors: A National Security Problem in the Making?”

  • Since 2005, Rep. Louie Gohmert has served Texas’s 1st District in the U.S. House of Representatives.
  • The Texan has an A+ rating by NumbersUSA, and has attended FAIR’s annual “Hold Their Feet to the Fire” event.

Anti-immigrant Views

  • From his position on immigration related committees over the years Rep. Gohmert has become a go-to for right-wing media outlets for opinions on immigration and terrorism, and frequently peddles bigotry and conspiracy theories regarding undocumented immigrants and Muslims.
  • In response to an influx of unaccompanied minors arriving in Texas in 2014, Rep. Gohmert suggested bringing in the Texas National Guard to “stop the invasion… [because] we don’t know what diseases they’re bringing in.”
  • Congressman Gohmert has publicly supported the construction of a wall along the Southern border, dismantling birthright citizenship, has described an increase of people seeking asylum as a “brazen invasion,” has praised the Muslim bans and once introduced a resolution which would declare Cesar Chavez’s birthday as “National Border Control Day.” 
  • Gohmert was one of the very few to defend Rep. Steve King’s comments to The New York Times when he stated: “White nationalist, white supremacist, Western civilization — how did that language become offensive?” 

Anti-immigrant Activity

  • Gohmert is a staunch supporter of President Trump and his immigration policies, and he has often come to Trump’s defense, even when it includes measures such as zero-tolerance and family separation. At a December 2018 congressional hearing, Gohmert defended the policy, saying “it’s what happens,” and “Mueller did it…to Manafort.”  
  • In 2019, Gohmert participated in an event organized by group We Build The Wall in New Mexico that featured a number of anti-immigrant activists, including Rosemary Jenks of NumbersUSA. 
  • Rep. Gohmert is an opponent of DACA, and since 2012 has worked with his allies in the U.S. Congress to attack the program. He has supported legislation that would defund DACA both as stand-alone bills and amendments attached to must-pass appropriations bills like the NDAA or the Department of Homeland Security Appropriation Act.
    • During the markup of the Dream and Promise Act of 2019, Congressman Gohmert introduced a “poison pill” measure in an attempt to sideline the bill which would have provided permanent protections for Dreamers and TPS recipients. 
    • In 2018, Gohmert teamed up with Immigration Reform Law Institute (IRLI) and five other Members of Congress, including Representatives Steve King, Andy Biggs, Paul Gosar, Thomas Massie and Ralph Norman, to file an amicus brief in support of the state of Texas for its lawsuit seeking to eliminate DACA. IRLI filed the brief on behalf of the Congressmen. 
    • In 2016, Gohmert supported amendments to the NDAA offered by Representatives King and Gosar, which were designed to prohibit Dreamers from serving in the military.
    • In the summer of 2014, Gohmert voted with Reps. Blackburn, Barletta, King and Brooks to pass a bill that would have halted DACA.
    • In 2013, Congressman Gohmert voted in favor of an amendment to the DHS Appropriations Act. H.Amdt.136 would have prohibited the use of funds to process DACA applications. The measure passed by a recorded vote 224/201.

Marsha Blackburn

U.S. Senator (R-TN)

Blackburn served as a member of Congress in the U.S. House of Representatives for over a decade before being elected to the Senate in 2018. While in office, Blackburn has made multiple efforts to scrap the DACA program. In 2017 Blackburn, who is known to associate with extremist groups, celebrated President Trump’s inauguration with Rep. Steve King and the Austrian Freedom Party, which was founded by Nazis in 1956.

  • Senator Blackburn represented Tennessee’s 7th Congressional District from 2002 until she became the state’s junior Senator in 2019. For years, Blackburn has advocated for legislation harmful to immigrants and refugees.
  • Editorials penned by Blackburn are regularly published by Breitbart. 

Anti-immigrant Views

  • The Tennessean holds an A+ rating from NumbersUSA and has a score of 100% from FAIR, whose annual “Hold Their Feet to the Fire” event she has attended.
  • In 2014, Blackburn was honored with an award from the anti-Muslim grassroots group ACT for America. ACT honors lawmakers who work to pass legislation aimed at disparaging both immigrants and Muslims.
  • Blackburn is one of three co-sponsors in the Senate to designate English as the United States’ official language.

Anti-immigrant Activity

  • Since President Obama announced DACA in June 2012, Blackburn has taken every opportunity to attack the program and its recipients. 
    • In 2015, then-Congresswoman Blackburn introduced an amendment to the Department of Homeland Security Appropriations Act that would have defunded DACA.
    • In 2014, Blackburn introduced a bill which would have prohibited federal funds from being used to process DACA applications. The bill passed the House by recorded voted on August 1, 2014.
  • During the 2018 midterm elections, Blackburn’s Senate campaign ads mentioned the caravan of asylum seekers headed for the Southern border almost 800 times, and described them as “gang members, known criminals, people from the Middle East, possibly even terrorists.”
  • Blackburn ran another ad in which she attacked her Democratic opponent Phil Bredesen for supporting ID cards for undocumented immigrants and for opposing the Muslim bans and the border wall.
  • At the height of the family separation crisis in the summer of 2018, Blackburn took the opportunity to assign blame to Democrats saying: “As a mother, my heart breaks for the families who are separated at the border, but we are in this position because liberals would not pay to enforce our immigration laws or build appropriate facilities for asylum seekers.”
  • The Tennessee Senator has advocated for the construction of a wall along the Southern border, often depicting immigrants as criminals making their way across the country: “You have every town a border town, and every state a border state… these gangs and drug traffickers, human traffickers, sex traffickers are coming to a community near you.”  

Paul Gosar

Congressman (R-AZ 4th District)

Congressman Paul Gosar is a strong ally of the organized anti-immigrant and anti-Muslim movements in the United States. He frequently cites anti-immigrant sources when discussing immigration issues. Ahead of President Trump’s state of the union address in January 2018, Gosar called for any Dreamers attending the event to be arrested and deported: "Of all the places where the Rule of Law needs to be enforced, it should be in the hallowed halls of Congress. Any illegal aliens attempting to go through security, under any pretext of invitation or otherwise, should be arrested and deported."

  • Rep. Gosar represents the 4th District of Arizona. He associates with some of the most far-right congressional members and their allies in the anti-immigrant lobby, who advocate for harsh attrition through enforcement policies, deporting Dreamers, radical reductions to overall immigration levels, ending birthright citizenship and barring individuals based on religion.
  • Rep. Gosar frequently cites CIS, FAIR and NumbersUSA in his public statements on immigration, and often touts their endorsement of legislation he sponsors. He has hosted a Facebook Live event with NumbersUSA. 
  • Included on Gosar’s ‘Awards and Recognitions’ page on his website, are his high marks from anti-immigrant groups NumbersUSA and FAIR, including a career “A+”  from NumbersUSA and a career 100% from FAIR. Gosar attended FAIR’s Hold Their Feet to the Fire event in 2016. 

Anti-immigrant Views

  • The Arizona congressman supports revoking the 14th Amendment and cosponsored Rep. King’s H.R.140, the Birthright Citizenship Act of 2019, which would eliminate granting automatic citizenship to the U.S.-born children of undocumented parents. He also supported the elimination in 2011, 2015 and 2017.
  • Congressman Gosar is a strong supporter of Arizona’s draconian “show me your papers” bill SB 1070, and has expressed his admiration for the legislation on multiple occasions: “I have been an avid supporter of the Arizona immigration law… Arizona was forced to fend for itself and enforce the laws already on the books because the Federal Government refused to.”
  • In January 2018, Gosar incorrectly cited debunked statistics on “DACA-aged” immigrants on his Facebook page. Gosar falsely posted “DACA-aged illegals account for nearly 30 percent of all kidnappings in Arizona.” 
  • On June 2018, during a floor speech before a House vote on the Dream and Promise Act, Congressman Gosar characterized Dreamers as “lawbreakers” and stated, “this legislation grants smugglers and gang members with green cards and a path to citizenship.”

Anti-immigrant Activity

  • In 2018, Gosar teamed up with Immigration Reform Law Institute (IRLI) and five other Members of Congress, including Representatives Steve King, Andy Biggs, Louie Gohmert, Thomas Massie and Ralph Norman, to file an amicus brief in support of the state of Texas for its lawsuit seeking to eliminate DACA. IRLI filed the brief on behalf of the Congressmen. 
  • In February 2019, on behalf of Gosar and Rep. King, IRLI filed an additional brief.
  • Congressman Gosar has sought to prohibit DACA recipients from joining the military, and introduced amendments to the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for  FY17, FY18 and FY19, that would have limited the government’s authority to enlist DACA recipients.
  • Gosar introduced the same amendment in the 114th Congress and it was rejected in a recorded vote with 30 Republicans voting against it.
  • The Arizona Congressman has introduced a measure which would prohibit undocumented immigrants from accessing in-state tuition, and has sought to terminate the Optional Practical Training or OPT program. HR. 3564, which would eliminate OPT, was introduced on June 27, 2019. The same month Gosar wrote a letter to President Trump calling for an end to the program through executive action: “Mr. President, American educated professionals and graduates need your support, protection and leadership. We encourage you to end OPT by Executive Order and put Americans first.”

Mo Brooks

Congressman (R-AL 5th District)

Alabama Congressman Mo Brooks regularly attends anti-immigrant gatherings and was a vocal proponent of Alabama’s harsh anti-immigrant law, HB 56. Brooks is an ardent opponent of allowing undocumented immigrants to serve in the U.S. military. At a town hall in June of 2011, the Alabama congressman claimed he would do “anything short of shooting” undocumented immigrants to remove them from the U.S.

  • Rep. Brooks has openly associated with the anti-immigrant lobby for years, and has participated at events with FAIR and CIS.
  • He is a regular attendee at FAIR’s annual “Hold Their Feet to the Fire” event, and in addition to citing FAIR’s research on the House floor, he has attended multiple events sponsored by CIS.
  • Brooks touts CIS’s endorsement of legislation he sponsors, and was a recipient of Tanton’s political action committee USIRPAC in 2018.

Anti-immigrant Views

  • In March 2019, Brooks read from Hitler’s “Mein Kampf” to attack Democrats alleging that they had pushed a “big lie” to smear President Trump during the Mueller investigation. The Alabama Holocaust Commission condemned Brooks’s remarks in a statement: “Such facile comparisons, used in order to demean opponents and gain political capital, should be actively avoided. Using such rhetoric not only trivializes our past, as well as the victims of this genocide, but also cheapens our current discourse and maintains a divisive rhetoric all too common at the present time.”
  • On Alabama’s destructive HB 56, Brooks claimed that reports of Latinx students staying home from school were the intended outcome of the legislation.
  • Brooks complained that criticism of Senator Sessions’s dismal record on civil rights amounted to a “war on whites,” a phrase he had used in 2014. Unsurprisingly Brooks went back on his agreement with then RNC Chair Reince Priebus to stop using the divisive language.
  • The Alabama Congressman supports revoking the 14th Amendment and cosponsored Rep. King’s H.R.140, the Birthright Citizenship Act of 2019, which would eliminate granting automatic citizenship to the U.S.-born children to undocumented parents. He also supported the elimination in 2011, 2013, 2015 and 2017.
  • In 2013, as Congress was considering an immigration compromise, Brooks joined Reps. Barletta and Lamar Smith, and Senator Sessions on a CIS teleconference to argue against it. Also in 2013, Brooks spoke at a rally organized by an anti-immigrant front group, along with Rep. Steve King and Senators Sessions and Cruz.  

Anti-immigrant Activity

  • Brooks has been a proponent for harsh immigration policies for years including building a wall at the Southern border, limiting protections for Temporary Protective Status recipients, promoting a monumental reduction of legal immigration, and banning the entry of individuals from predominantly Muslim countries.
  • In May 2018, Brooks filed a lawsuit against the Census Bureau for counting undocumented immigrants in the Census, though the administration asked for the case to be dismissed.   
  • Brooks has been a strident opponent of allowing Dreamers to serve in the U.S. military, and has previously introduced legislation to prevent DACA recipients from doing so.
  • In 2014, Brooks warned his colleagues that “all hell will break loose” if they supported legislation that would allow Dreamers to serve and be “on equal footing with American citizens for jobs in the military.”
  • Additionally, Rep. Brooks cautioned lawmakers against supporting former Congressman Jeff Denham’s ENLIST Act on the premise of their possible disloyalty to the U.S.
  • Congressman Brooks defended President Trump’s decision to declare a national emergency in order to fund the construction of a wall along the Southern border, claiming the lack of a border wall had led to the loss of American lives, and compared it to 9/11 casualties. 
  • In 2018, Brooks expressed support for President Trump’s plan to deploy National Guard troops to the Southern border “against an invasion of foreign nationals,” until Congress funded a border wall.

Lou Barletta

Former Congressman (R-PA 11th District) and member of FAIR's Board of Advisors

Former U.S. Representative Lou Barletta began his anti-immigrant crusade when he served as mayor of Hazleton, PA, where he teamed up with Kris Kobach to introduce a number of anti-immigrant city ordinances in a package as part of the anti-immigrant movement’s attrition through enforcement campaign. Barletta went on to serve on FAIR’s board of advisors and has openly praised both NumbersUSA and CIS. The FAIR Board of Advisors member once stated that his 2006 Hazleton effort was inspired by self-described “proud nationalist” Joseph Turner. Turner pushed a similar effort in San Bernardino, California in order to prevent the state from becoming, as he claimed, a “Third World Cesspool.”

  • Former U.S. Rep. Lou Barletta (R-PA) served in Congress from 2011 to 2019.
  • He previously served as mayor of Hazleton, Pennsylvania, where he implemented and defended a draconian anti-immigrant housing ordinance, which had been devised by Kris Kobach, formerly of the Immigration Reform Law Institute (IRLI), in 2006. As a congressman, Barletta continued to champion the organized anti-immigrant movement and made no secret of his support for its work.
  • A federal judge ultimately ruled that the ordinance was unconstitutional, and ordered Hazleton to pay $1.4 million to attorneys who challenged the law. Barletta showed no remorse for city taxpayers following the ruling.
  • In a sign of his strong relationship with the organized anti-immigrant movement, Barletta joined FAIR’s advisory board and remains a member today.

Anti-immigrant Views 

  • In June 2018, Barletta defended the Trump Administration’s family separation policy saying: “In America, we have laws. Should you or I commit a criminal act this afternoon after we’re done with this interview, we’re going to be separated from our families…Remember, why people come to the country illegally is because we’re not enforcing the laws. So if people knew when they came here what would happen, we would not have this situation.”
  • In addition to FAIR, Barletta has praised the work and counsel of NumbersUSA. “I rely on NumbersUSA whenever there’s an immigration-related bill in the House,” he told MSNBC in 2013. ”I like to get their input and their opinion on pending legislation, and I like to hear what they have to say about immigration-related bills and amendments I’m considering offering.”
  • Barletta lauded the publication of a report by anti-immigrant think tank Center for Immigration Studies (CIS) in 2014, claiming that the release of the report should be referred to as “the day immigration reform died.”
  • Barletta was a recipient of funding from Tanton’s political action committee USIRPAC in 2008, 2012, 2014, 2016 and 2018. He was a featured speaker at the 2011 Writer’s Workshop of The Social Contract Press, an annual event organized by Tanton’s U.S., Inc., and is a regular attendee at FAIR’s annual immigrant-bashing “Hold Their Feet to the Fire” event.
  • In 2016, Barletta did an interview with anti-Semitic tabloid American Free Press, which is a publication that promotes Holocaust denial. During the interview Barletta talked about his ordinance in Hazleton crafted with the help of Kobach.
  • In 2009, he spoke at a conference hosted by the now-defunct group The American Cause, whose leadership were active in white nationalist circles. American Cause’s executive director was previously charged with drunkenly assaulting an African-American woman after using a racial slur against her.

Anti-immigrant Activity

  • Barletta made attacking immigrants a focal point of his 2018 Senate bid, and went so far as to send out a mailer stating that “America is at war,” and described some immigration measures as encouraging murder and terrorism.
  • In 2006, as mayor of Hazleton, Pennsylvania, Barletta implemented a draconian anti-immigrant housing ordinance, devised by Kris Kobach. While in Congress, Barletta worked to derail bipartisan immigration reform and was a major force behind House Republicans attacks on Dreamers and the DACA program.
  • In 2013, as Congress was considering an immigration compromise, Barletta joined Rep. Brooks, Rep. Lamar Smith and Senator Sessions on a CIS teleconference to argue against it.
  • The Pennsylvania Congressman supports revoking birthright citizenship as laid out in the 14th Amendment and cosponsored Rep. King’s H.R.140, the Birthright Citizenship Act four times in 2011, 2013, 2015, 2017, which would eliminate granting automatic citizenship to the U.S.-born children of undocumented parents.
  • Barletta has attacked Dreamers for years, including introducing a piece of legislation titled the Defense of Legal Workers Act of 2017, which would prohibit DACA recipients from receiving work authorization.
  • Barletta voted in favor of legislation that would defund DACA and subject the program’s recipients to immediate deportation.
  • In the summer of 2014, Barletta voted with Reps. Blackburn and King to pass a bill that would have halted DACA. Barletta released a statement congratulating himself saying that he, “played a key role” in stopping a “non-deportation policy in its tracks”

Breitbart

Formerly headed by Steve Bannon, Breitbart News is a far-right syndicated news, opinion and commentary web site that routinely publishes anti-immigrant and anti-Muslim conspiracy theories and provides a platform to many anti-immigrant talking heads. Breitbart has used its rising platform to amplify the anti-immigrant movement’s messages. Reports and other publications produced by anti-immigrant groups like the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS) and Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR), reliably garner positive coverage from the outlet once described by Steve Bannon as “the platform for the alt-right.” In 2015, CIS awarded Breitbart reporter Neil Munro its Eugene Katz Award for Excellence in the Coverage of Immigration. Anti-immigrant hard-liners Kris Kobach, Dale Wilcox, and Marsha Blackburn all have written regular columns for Breitbart.

Fox News

Fox not only gives a platform to anti-immigrant voices, but also spreads anti-immigrant conspiracy theories to a wide audience via its nightly pundits such as Laura Ingraham and Tucker Carlson.  As the country’s most prominent right wing news outlet, Fox News has reliably provided a platform for the anti-immigrant movement for years. Anti-immigrant spokespeople and publications by anti-immigrant groups such as Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR) and the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS), are a fixture of the network’s immigration-related coverage. Ironically, Tucker Carlson, the keystone anchor of Fox’s primetime programming was once an ardent critic of the FAIR and other anti-immigrant spokespeople. “There are reasonable critics of immigration, but [FAIR’s] Dan Stein is not one of them,” Carlson wrote in a 1997 Wall Street Journal article, “Which makes it all the more puzzling that a number of otherwise sober-minded conservatives seem to be making common cause with Mr. Stein and FAIR.” In 2017, twenty years later, Stein was an in-studio guest on Tucker Carlson Tonight multiple times. His appearances on the show have been largely friendly and non-combative.  In one instance, FAIR gave exclusive access to the Tucker Carlson show of a new study that “shows the scale on which the United States is being plundered” by immigrants.

National Review

While National Review has removed a number of far-right contributors such as John Derbyshire and Peter Brimelow, it continues to publish a regular column from the Center for Immigration Studies’ (CIS) Mark Krikorian and regularly publishes the work of prominent figures in the anti-immigrant movement. 

National Review has misleadingly developed a reputation as the home base for reasonable conservative thought, largely due to the publication’s founder, the late William F. Buckley’s opposition to conspiracy-spouting groups like the John Birch Society. However, the outlet has regularly published Center for Immigration Studies Executive Director Mark Krikorian for nearly fifteen years. Krikorian’s missives for the magazine and its online companion are rife with incendiary and bigoted sentiment. Among other things, Krikorian has derided the “weakness and backwardness” of Mexicans, claimed after the devastating earthquake in Haiti that the country is, “so screwed up because it wasn’t colonized long enough,” and accused pro-immigrant faith leaders of “prostituting scripture.”

Others

The anti-immigrant movement has also benefited from conservative new media publications. These outlets include, but are not limited to, The Washington Times, The Daily Caller, The Washington Examiner, Lifezette, One America News, Newsmax, and blogs of conservative organizations such as the American Family Association’s One News Now, and the Heritage Foundation’s The Daily Signal. Much like coverage the anti-immigrant movement receives from Breitbart, these smaller outlets frequently present anti-immigrant leaders and their assertions uncritically, flouting any traditional standards for journalistic integrity.