For all the advice President Barack Obama is trying to give President-elect Donald Trump, the latter’s quest to dismantle much of what the former accomplished in the past eight years hasn’t diminished. From threatening to undo the normalized relations between Cuba and the United States, to his administration’s repeated calls for a so-called “Muslim registry,” the sheer amount of
change reverse-engineering proposed by Trump’s team is staggering. Well, Obama is still in office, and he’s about to make his successor’s plans for American Muslims all the more difficult.
According to the New York Times, the Obama White House has tasked the Department of Homeland Security with the job of doing away with the National Security Entry-Exit Registration System (NSEERS). Per documents obtained by the NYT and other outlets, the “largely symbolic” gesture will raze the President George W. Bush-era program developed following the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks and “[distance] the departing administration from any effort by the new president to revive” it. Then again, the program hasn’t been used since 2011:
“D.H.S. ceased use of Nseers more than five years ago, after it was determined the program was redundant, inefficient and provided no increase in security,” Neema Hakim, a spokesman for the Department of Homeland Security, said in a statement. The program is “not only obsolete” and “outdated,” but diverts personnel and resources from other areas that are seen as more effective, the statement said.
NSEERS first reentered the national consciousness when one of its developers, Kansas secretary of state Kris Kobach, was photographed carrying sensitive documentation into a meeting with Trump. Of the many items clearly visible on Kobach’s unsheathed documents, the heading “Bar the Entry of Potential Terrorists” appeared along with several references to the program.
Trump has made his interest in the program, and its potential applicability to a Muslim registry, well known in several interviews. When asked about the matter following the Berlin terrorist attack, the president-elect told the NYT, “You know my plans.”
(Via New York Times)