Politico sheds the spotlight on the guy who takes Miller’s orders and carries them out in a effort to slow and stop people from immigrating to this country….
He’s NOT the boss of ICE or even the Border Patrol Cop’s …..
One was the establishment of a “denaturalization task force” that pledges to investigate immigration fraud and strip away citizenship in such cases—something that’s historically been reserved for serious criminals or terrorists. Another was a new memo that allows visa officers to deny applications without first requesting more evidence or notifying an applicant.
Then there’s the refugee program, which has been decimated as the administration slashes the level of admissions and redirects its resources to domestic asylum cases—people who have already arrived safely in the United States. And coming soon: a controversial proposed regulation that could prevent immigrants from obtaining green cards if they or their family members have used a public benefit, which is expected to include everything from food stamps to health insurance programs.
The man overseeing these reforms isn’t Stephen Miller, the White House aide publicly known as the architect of Donald Trump’s most restrictionist immigration policies. It’s Lee Francis Cissna, the director of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), an agency that not only facilitates legal immigration, but historically celebrates it. Miller is rightly seen as the mastermind of Trump’s far-reaching immigration crackdown, but Cissna is arguably just as important because he makes it happen.
Much less visible than Miller or Department of Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen, Cissna has quietly carried out Trump’s policies with a workmanlike dedication. From his perch atop USCIS, he’s issued a steady stream of policy changes and regulations that have transformed his agency into more of an enforcement body and less of a service provider. These changes have generated blowback from immigrant advocates, businesses and even some of his own employees. Leon Rodriguez, who served as USCIS director under President Barack Obama, said the agency is sending a message “that this is a less welcoming environment than it may have been before.”
While the travel ban and family separations grabbed headlines, Cissna has waged a quieter war, tightening and reworking regulations and guidance that make it harder to come to the U.S. as an immigrant or temporary worker. Most of the changes are technical and haven’t drawn the legal challenges of Trump’s more high-profile immigration moves….