Joe Guzzardi: With Joe Biden, Barack Obama's Gang is Back in Business

As President Donald Trump weighs which course he may walk as his White House days grow short, he’s considering two paths.

The first is to watch from a distance, and not interfere with the incoming Democratic administration. President-elect Joe Biden’s early appointees — namely White House chief of staff Ron Klain, Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas and phony-baloney climate envoy John Kerry — are Obama era retreads.

Given that eight years of President Barack Obama’s administration — which prominently included Klain, Mayorkas and Kerry — helped elect Trump, his thinking may be that Biden’s agenda will play out favorably for the 2024 Republican candidate.

Trump’s second option would be to issue a slew of executive orders designed to keep his America First policies alive and kicking for as long as possible.

Option One is Trump’s wisest course. Klain, Mayorkas and Kerry have track records that will not create national unity, no matter how vigorously Biden calls for Americans to join together in his support.

Klain was a Silicon Valley and tech monopoly lobbyist who at the outset of the coronavirus pandemic condemned Trump’s China travel ban and disparaged Americans who have “needless fears” about the disease — wrong and wrong again.

In retrospect, Klain’s remarks are staggeringly partisan and cataclysmically misinformed. In 2016, he joined TechNet, one of Silicon Valley’s most powerful lobbying groups. Klain will push to end employment-based visa caps, especially on the H-1B, a long-time goal that Google, Microsoft, Apple and other tech titans have sought to further displace U.S. workers.

The last thing that America needs, but will soon get, are powerful America Last lobbyists at Biden’s side.

A Wall Street Journal analysis found that at least 40 Biden transition team advisers were or are, like Klain, registered lobbyists. Represented on Biden’s team are Uber, Visa, Capital One, Airbnb, Amazon and the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative executives. In 2019, lobbyists lavished nearly $3.5 billion on behalf of expanding foreign labor, more than twice their 1999 outlay.

Mayorkas is infamous for creating deferred action for childhood arrivals (DACA), an Obama-era program that without congressional approval grants affirmative benefits to unlawfully present aliens. In a 2017 PBS interview, he proposed expanding DACA from its current 800,000 to an unspecified total that could reach into the millions.

From 2009 to 2013, Mayorkas oversaw U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, the federal agency responsible for legal immigration.

He also intervened on behalf of connected Democrats to secure EB-5 citizenship-for-sale visas for wealthy international investors. A DHS inspector general’s report found that Mayorkas intervened “outside the normal adjudicatory process” and “in ways that benefited the stakeholders.”

Finally, perhaps for comic relief, Biden will add Kerry to his team. A failed U.S. senator, a 2004 presidential loser and an inept secretary of state, Kerry is an incessant climate nag whose actions belie his preaching.

Kerry’s estimated net worth exceeds $3 billion, a fortune that enabled him to purchase a $12 million, 18-acre Martha’s Vineyard oceanfront mansion not far from Obama’s own estate. Although he labeled climate change as “perhaps the world’s most fearsome weapon of mass destruction,” Kerry’s preferred personal travel mode is private jets, limos and luxury yachts.

Above all else, Biden, Klain, Mayorkas and Kerry share a commitment to increasing legal immigration from the current 1 million-plus annually, granting amnesty and encouraging illegal immigration.

Biden’s policies will add millions of work-authorized persons to the labor pool and create a hiring bonanza for cheap labor-addicted employers. Millions of American voters rejected Trump, but they’ll be surprised at the transformed America that Biden’s presidency is guaranteed to create.

— Joe Guzzardi is an analyst and researcher with Progressives for Immigration Reform who now lives in Pittsburgh. He can be reached at [email protected], or follow him on Twitter: @joeguzzardi19. Click here to read previous columns. The opinions expressed are his own.

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