When a member of the Trump administration is on the receiving end of a personal attack from a prominent member of Congress or the media, there is little chance they will turn a blind eye to it. For White House Chief of Staff, John Kelly, his response to Illinois Rep. Luis Gutierrez’s absurd accusations relating to Kelly’s position on ending Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) was met with a scathing response from the former Marine Corps General.
In a “big lie” effort, Gutierrez accused a man who served his country with distinction for four decades of being a hypocrite and a disgrace to the uniform, as well as someone with no more honor than white supremacists, because Kelly is not on board with the agenda that Gutierrez would like him to be.
A spokesman for the congressman stated:
[S]o far we have seen no courage to fight for DREAMers from the President or his Chief of Staff. There is a clear majority in the House today to support measures to defend DACA recipients, but Republicans need to choose whether they want to let that happen or not. So far, the answer is not.”
That statement flies in the face of the fact that Kelly gave Congress over six months to come up with their own solution, which they squandered. In Kelly’s own words:
During my time at DHS – from 20 Jan until this moment – I have met with hundreds of members on both sides of the hill … My [message] always was ‘I have bought you time to do something on DACA.’ I begged and pleaded with them. They did exactly nothing.”
Kelly did well to sift through Gutierrez’s embellished hyperbole meant to overwhelm so that a focused response would be difficult to produce.
As far as the congressman and other irresponsible members of Congress are concerned, they have the luxury of saying what they want as they do nothing and have almost no responsibility,” Kelly said. “They can call people liars but it would be inappropriate for me to say the same thing back at them. As my blessed mother used to say, ‘empty barrels make the most noise.” Kelly added.
The emotional argument from politicians often has a tiring effect, as some inevitably resort to name calling and slandering anyone who disagrees with them. While there can be an argument made about the ethics behind ending DACA, Kelly punctuated the legal reality of it by stating, “Every DOJ and DHS lawyer says DACA is unconstitutional. Every other legal scholar — right and left — says the same thing. Trump didn’t end DACA, the law did.”
Some have suggested that Gutierrez and politicians like him need to focus on winning seats back if they want to make a change. Making false claims about respected military leaders is never a winning cause. Meanwhile, Democratic representatives have been criticized for failing to work with Republicans to introduce constitutional policies that restrict illegal immigration and improve or enforce existing legal immigration policies.