In itself, criminal justice reform for non-violent offenders is not anathema to Trump’s libertarian supporters (check).
For what it symbolizes in the broader political context, however, the passing of the First Step Act—as the criminal justice reform bill is called—is a bit of an abomination.
Good or bad, the First Step Act is Jared Kushner’s baby. And Kushner, Trump’s liberal son-in-law, should not be having legislative coups!
Yes, Jared and Ivanka are on a tear. The midterm congressional elections of President Trump’s first-term have culminated in a legislative victory for an anemic man, who provides a perfect peg on which to hang the ambitions of the forceful first daughter.
In no time at all have Jared and Ivanka Trump moved to consolidate power. This, as intellects like Steven Bannon and Stephen Miller were either fired, or confined to the basement, so to speak.
Today, Bannon is just a flinty glint in Ivanka’s eyes. But by January, 2017, the president’s former White House chief strategist had already “assembled a list of more than 200 executive orders to issue in the first 100 days. The very first EO, in his view, had to be a crackdown on immigration. After all, it was one of Trump’s core campaign promises.” So said Bannon to Michael Wolff, author of Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House.
Many a pundit has suggested that Trump give a kick-ass rah-rah address to explain immigration to the nation.
Nonsense on stilts. The Make America Great Again (S.O.S.) agenda needed to be explained daily and repetitively by someone with a brain. It should have been MAGA every morning with Miller, or Gen. John Kelly or Kirstjen Nielsen. Instead, we got stumblebum Sarah Huckabee issuing a meek, meandering daily apologia.
About that promise to put in place only “the best of people”: Ice princess Kirstjen Nielsen is super smart with a cool temperament and looks to match. Homeland Security Secretary Nielsen had been brought into the Trump Administration by retired United States Marine Corps Gen. John Kelly, formerly White House chief of staff. Nielsen might not be optimal in her current position. But she would’ve made a great MAGA mouthpiece.
It’s quite clear that President Trump’s promise to hire only “the best” ought to have begun with firing The Family. Instead, Mr. Kushner‘s national security portfolio has expanded in a manner incommensurate with his skills. It now includes, I believe, China, Mexico, Iraq, Israel and Saudi Arabia.
The same can be said of Ivanka, who was soon briefing the South Korean president on sanctions against North Korea. That Ivanka lacked a permanent security clearance was the least of the country’s worries, given Steve Bannon’s assessment of her cerebral acuity: “as dumb as a brick”. …