Politico runs an in-depth profile of Stephen Miller, Trump’s 33 year old advisor on immigration. Here are some passages:
Liberal upbringing in Santa Monica, California…deeply shaken by the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, at Duke as an undergraduate as a columnist for the student newspaper he warned that multiculturalism poses a threat to American identity.
He has installed acolytes across key U.S. agencies, such as the State Department. He has inserted himself into NSC deliberations to an extraordinary degree for someone not in that elite group’s ranks. He takes care to limit his paper trial, avoiding email and keeping his name off documents when possible.
Miller from the start wielded tremendous sway over the Domestic Policy Council, a White House-based forum of top U.S. officials and staffers who deal with issues such as health care, education and other domestic topics aside from the economy. Some elements of immigration policy are among the DPC’s portfolios. But there are other aspects of immigration that have been traditionally dealt with by the NSC, such as refugee resettlement and recalcitrant countries. According to multiple former officials, under Miller, the DPC proposed that it take the lead on all immigration matters, including what was supposed to be handled by the NSC. NSC staffers raised concerns. But Miller pushed then-national security adviser H.R. McMaster and Tom Bossert, the homeland security adviser at the time, to effectively cede control of immigration policy to him.
“The entirety of my work during my time in the administration was influenced or dictated maybe 90 percent of the time by Miller, but I saw maybe three emails from him,” the former administration official said.
Perhaps Miller’s most important move has been identifying and promoting lower-level staffers who share his anti-immigration views, some of whom he helped place into key agencies, essentially embedding foot soldiers across the federal government.
A White House staffer who admires Miller said the Trump confidant is in contact with many more career staffers across the government who support his views, even lawyers from the Department of Housing and Urban Development. Miller has asked people to look at every policy change possible within the executive branch’s authority to be stricter on immigration, the White House staffer said.
The former White House official warned, however, against exaggerating Miller’s reach, saying that although he has a solid “kitchen cabinet” of advisers, “there’s a mythology that’s crept up that overstates their influence.” Miller, the former official added, has promoted that “myth.”
Current and former officials say they can’t recall any incidents in which Miller used overtly racist language. Instead, they say, his views appeared more nativist — his language loaded with suspicion, if not outright hostility, toward non-Americans, including refugees.