Kris Kobach: Trump considers appointing a far-right conservative 'immigration tzar'

The top candidates on President Trump’s short list for 'immigration tsar' include Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach and former Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli

Sarah Harvard
New York
Tuesday 02 April 2019 15:21
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President-elect Donald Trump and Kris Kobach, Kansas secretary of state, pose for a photo following their meeting with president-elect at Trump International Golf Club, November 20, 2016 in Bedminster Township, New Jersey.
President-elect Donald Trump and Kris Kobach, Kansas secretary of state, pose for a photo following their meeting with president-elect at Trump International Golf Club, November 20, 2016 in Bedminster Township, New Jersey.

In addition to threatening to shutdown the southern border, Donald Trump is looking into bringing a “border” or “immigration” tsar on board to work on immigration policy across several federal agencies, according to sources familiar with the proposal.

The top candidates on President Trump’s short list for “immigration tsar” include Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach and former Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli, both of whom are far-right conservative views on immigration policy.

Mr Kobach previously ran for an unsuccessful bid for Kansas governor with the promise to drive undocumented immigrants out of the US. He currently works for WeBuildthewall Inc, a nonprofit corporation raising money to construct the president’s infamous border wall.

Mr Cuccinelli has been known for championing hard-line immigration views including denying citizenship to US-born children of undocumented immigrants, allowing in-state tuition at public universities only for citizens or legal residents, and allowing employees to file lawsuits against their employer if they knowingly hire an undocumented immigrant who took a job from a “law abiding competitor.”

Mr Cuccinelli was seen visiting the White House on Monday.

The likely appointmen comes on the heels of the president’s threatening call to close the US-Mexican border this week if Mexico does not completely halt undocumented immigration into the country.

White House aides, who spoke to the Associated Press on the condition of anonymity, said the immigration tsar position is still in the planning stages and is hoping whoever it may be serve as the “face” of the Trump administration on immigration. They also hope appointing an immigration tsar would appease the president’s supporters, proving to them he is committed and taking action in what he believes is a broken immigration system.

It is uncertain whether the tsar position would be fall within Homeland Security, which is the federal agency overseeing for immigration policy and enforcement, or the White House, which would not require a Senate confirmation.

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