When Obama and Trump met at the White House after the November election, the president promised to make the transition as smooth as possible. However, behind the scenes, the outgoing Obama administration seems to be taking every opportunity to do the opposite.
Obama has been hurriedly pushing through measures that fly in the face of Trump’s stated priorities, such as strengthening border security and vetting immigrants from particular regions.
The Associated Press reports on just one of these efforts:
The Obama administration on Thursday officially scrapped the last vestiges of a U.S. registration system for Muslim immigrants. If President-elect Donald Trump now wants to introduce an expanded version of the program, he will have to start from scratch.
The post-9/11 registration program for immigrant men arriving mainly from the Islamic world hasn’t been enforced since 2011. Although it never prohibited travel for men and boys from the more than 20 affected countries, including Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan, Trump’s suggestions about banning Muslim immigrants from the United States have led to fears that it could be reinstated and used for new and enhanced purposes.
The decision to erase it from the books entirely marks one of President Barack Obama’s last administrative actions on immigration and will at least slow any Trump effort to introduce even tougher requirements, as has been suggested by a top adviser.
It’s unclear whether or not the program has been effective, since it is hard to prove a negative, such as how many terrorist attacks this registry has prevented.
Time and again, we learn after the fact that Islamic terrorists in Europe and elsewhere were on government “watchlists” and clearly that had no effect on their actions.
Perhaps Trump is planning to do something more effective: Instead of registering individuals after they arrive in the U.S., maybe it would be wiser to keep them from setting foot on American soil in the first place.
Source: Associate Press