Trump again chooses anti-immigrant hate group staffer for immigration job

The nomination of Ronald Mortensen as assistant secretary of state for the Bureau of Population, Refugees and Migration is an outrage – another shameful example of President Trump reaching into the ranks of far-right extremist groups to fill powerful positions in his administration. 

If confirmed by the Senate, Mortensen will be the fourth [1] person to join the administration directly from a nativist hate group and will be stepping into an influential role shaping immigration policy.

Mortensen currently serves as a fellow at the Center for Immigration Studies, an anti-immigrant hate group that’s part of a network founded by white nationalist John Tanton. The Center for Immigration Studies is well known for producing shoddy research that demonizes immigrants with falsehoods. While he’s been there, Mortensen has played a role in exaggerating — against all evidence — a link between immigration and crime.

This nomination, once again, shows that extremist groups have a direct line to federal power in the Trump administration. Mortensen's nomination should be opposed.


[1] Julie Kirchner, the former executive director of the anti-immigrant hate group Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR), was named Ombudsman for the Citizenship and Immigration Services branch of the Department of Homeland Security in May 2017.

Robert Law, a senior policy adviser to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), previously worked as lobbying director for FAIR.

Jon Feere, a longtime staffer with the nativist think tank Center for Immigration Studies (CIS), joined the Department of Homeland Security's Immigration and Customs Enforcement at senior adviser.