Last updated on August 8, 2020
“Quit being so emotional, Elaine, it’s not about the people, it’s about the money.” Mick Mulvaney to Elaine Duke, acting director of Homeland security in 2017.
Of course, he did.
Some news outlets stated that he was joking, where have we heard that canard before? If we have learned anything it is that when a Republican speaks evil we should believe them
Elaine Duke, who was acting secretary of Homeland Security for a little over four months in 2017 has become the latest White House official to speak up against her former boss. In an interview with the New York Times, Duke says a lot of things we’ve come to expect from those who have gotten a front-seat view of how President Donald Trump’s White House operates. But one little detail jumps out and manages to show that there is still a margin to be shocked by the president. Apparently, Trump suggested that maybe the United States could consider selling Puerto Rico. That happened shortly after Hurricane Maria devastated the island in the late summer of 2017.
Duke was already feeling frustrated before the hurricane even caused any devastation as she argued that there should be an emergency declaration before landfall. “Quit being so emotional, Elaine, it’s not about the people, it’s about the money,” Duke claims that Mick Mulvaney, who was then the president’s budget director, said. Mulvaney, who went on to become acting chief of staff , vehemently denies that was the case. But Duke said she got the biggest shock during the response when she heard Trump raising the possibility of getting rid of Puerto Rico entirely. “The president’s initial ideas were more of as a businessman, you know,” she said. “Can we outsource the electricity? Can we can we sell the island? You know, or divest of that asset?” The idea wasn’t ever seriously considered.
Duke was acting secretary when she signed off on ending the DACA protections—the program set up by the Obama administration to protect young undocumented immigrants, known as Dreamers, from deportation. Duke told the Times that she agreed the program was illegal, but wasn’t ready to sign off on its closure, and that she was “ambushed” by Trump and his political allies at an August 2017 White House meeting. Last month the Supreme Court ruled that the DACA program was improperly ended—giving the Dreamers a reprieve, but also opening the door for the Trump administration to try again.
Lincoln Green wrote a diary on this story last night.
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