Discover and read the best of Twitter Threads about #TantonPapers

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#TantonPapers Update - We're inching closer to breaking the seal!

Thank you to our lawyer @olcplc for a well-argued Motion to Compel yesterday before the Michigan Court of Claims.

Watch the hearing here (starts at 15:25):

At issue: @UMich has lost all of their "blanket" defenses to disclosure of the #TantonPapers. Only the personal/privacy exemption remained, which exempts info that constitutes a clear invasion of privacy (such as SSN).

So they had to go through 25,000 papers 1 by 1.
They were supposed to list everything in a Vaughn index, but they did such a poor job it didn't help the Court determine whether the exemption applied.

(They said it would have cost them $200,000 to do it, at 2 min per page. Do the math.)

I don't think the Court was happy.
Read 7 tweets
In November, we successfully obtained an index prepared by @UMich of the sealed #TantonPapers. The first glimpse of the papers I've fought to see for 5 years now.

Oral argument 1/12; if you're just getting here: here's why these papers are important:…
Interesting tidbits out of the Vaughn index:

1. Finances of the Pioneer Fund, (the eugenics "research" funder who adopted much Nazi ideology and funded the Tanton Network in its formative years)

2. Publication ideas

3. State-specific documents (CA, AZ, MD, TX, FL, MI, others)
4. WITAN (the secret racist leaders meeting) notes

5. @IRLILaw meeting minutes (the legal arm of FAIR, to which @KrisKobach1787 served)

6. Extensive population studies (to use to push anti-immigrant policy)

These papers must see the light of day.
Read 4 tweets
Update on #TantonPapers Lawsuit:

@UMich, after losing at the Mich Supreme Court, and losing again on remand, is re-appealing the case up to the Michigan Court of Appeals.

We had asked them to prepare a log of which FOIA exemptions they thought applied to the sealed papers.
Of course they resisted, even after the Court ordered them to. Now they're appealing that.

I get that UM is part of the identity of the State of Michigan.

Why they're fighting to keep an influential white nationalist's papers secret is beyond me.
Curiously, they're arguing that unsealing the papers inhibits access to knowledge.

Same old argument: "No one will donate to us!"

There are simple things donors can do to effectuate their intent. I'm not saying donors can't do those things.

Just that Tanton didn't.
Read 4 tweets

Just won another major milestone in the quest to unseal the #TantonPapers. If you're just getting here, some background:…
After our win in the Michigan Supreme Court and remand back to the Court of Claims, the University filed a motion to dismiss. This morning, it was denied.

The University's principal argument since the beginning was that the gift agreement between Tanton and UM served to insulate the sealed papers from FOIA.

Today, they lost that argument.
Read 10 tweets
Who is the anti-immigrant movement?

It's time to pull off their masks. My colleague @MarkPotok with @C4ARR put together profiles of key players in this network.

They're the reason we're in this mess.
1. Dan Stein

President of Tanton flagship @FAIRImmigration and faithful acolyte of John Tanton, racist architect of the movement.

Wants to bring back racial quotas into immigration.
Thinks Latinos and Muslims are a threat to American identity.
2. Mark Krikorian

ED of @CIS_org, the Tanton "think tank."

Virulent Islamophobe and white nationalist sympathizer.
Pushes racist agenda under academic guise.
Thinks immigrant children should be sent to Guantánamo.

Read 10 tweets
*knock knock* hey @StephenM you listening? I'm the guy unsealing the #TantonPapers, the blueprint for the organizations that told you how to build your deportation machine.

I've been at this for over 4 years. Just wanted to share a little update!
Some quick background: John Tanton was the mastermind behind the largest and most effective anti-immigrant organizations in the US. Tied inextricably to the white nationalist movements, they've infiltrated deep into all levels of government and policy.…
After 4 years, thanks to @isabelaalhadeff I finally got to see the "gift agreement" Tanton struck with UM. And it likely doesn't reach the level of an enforceable contract. Nothing more than a string of receipts. But here's the kicker:
Read 10 tweets
#TantonPapers case update:

After 4 years, I'm finally taking @UMich to trial.

Yesterday we propounded initial discovery. Item #1:
"PRODUCE: The Donor/Gift Agreement between Dr. Tanton and The University of Michigan/Bentley Historical Library."
Besides the papers themselves, this secret gift agreement is the most important piece of this puzzle. Why did Tanton want to keep his papers secret through 2035? How did they agree to only keep half of them closed, and why? Were there any other parties involved in the decision?
I had tried to request this secret agreement through FOIA in 2017, but UM denied it, saying we were parties to litigation. OK, fair enough. One of my colleagues tried to ask for it, and they denied her too, saying she was my agent and therefore a party to the litigation as well!
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I'm 2 days late posting this because I got hacked an hour after I posted a thread on @stephenm and white nationalist law group.

On 4/9, the Mich. Supreme Court ruled in my favor: my lawsuit v. @UMich to unseal the #TantonPapers will proceed!…
If you're new here: 4 years ago I filed a FOIA to unseal the secret papers of John Tanton, the racist mastermind behind the anti-immigrant movement.

His organizations, known as the Tanton Network, are responsible for stalling immigration reform for the past 30 years.
They run for cover when confronted with evidence of their eugenics-fueled origins.

Sadly, they're rarely confronted. That's why I want to break the seal on their founders' papers.…
Read 11 tweets
Last year I sat down with @Alyssa_Milano and Katie McHugh, the former Breitbart reporter who leaked the Miller emails.

White nationalism isn't new, but the way it was promulgated and normalized by @stephenm is something we must understand.


I've been trying to tell a part of this story by suing @UMich to unseal the #TantonPapers, which outline the conceptual and ideological underpinnings of the modern anti-immigrant movement.

The #TantonNetwork is what told Miller how to do what he did, and what he continues to do.
We ignore camouflaged white nationalism at our own peril.

@jeanguerre and @mehdirhasan are correct: stop normalizing Stephen Miller.

White nationalists don't get a seat at the table. Let him lie in the bed he made.
Read 3 tweets
Four years ago, I filed a request to unseal the papers of white supremacist John Tanton. Sealed away at @UMich until 2035, the #TantonPapers will shed light on the anti-immigrant organizations he built that are largely responsible for the horrors of the last 4 years.
The University has fought me tooth and nail for 4 years to keep these papers secret. Supposedly honoring a mysterious "gift agreement" with Tanton - which they've NEVER produced a copy of.

Here's a timeline:…
But, with the help of @olcplc and @Allandaros we beat them at the Michigan Court of Appeals in 2019.

Instead of turning these papers over, the University took it to the Michigan Supreme Court.
Read 8 tweets
Jean Raspail was the author of #CampOfTheSaints, a virulently racist hate novel that's achieved cult classic status among white nationalists. A favorite of Steve Bannon and Stephen Miller, the novel portrays the death of Western civilization by refugees.…
John Tanton, founder of today's anti-immigrant movement, whose organizations have infiltrated deep into the Trump administration, loved the novel so much he acquired the rights to republish it in 1994.

My review:
The influence of the novel cannot be overstated. If you're wondering where the WN movement gets its inspiration to formulate the horrific policies we've seen rolled out, look inside the minds of racists like Jean Raspail. Stephen Miller did:…
Read 8 tweets
#DACA survives. Here's what everyone needs to know. (Thread)


The revocation of DACA was unlawful. But to be clear: this was *not* a decision upholding the constitutionality of DACA. And that underscores the 1st takeaway: Celebrate, but this is NOT over.
What was illegal about it? Bluntly: they screwed up. Trump, Miller, then-Secy Elaine Duke, then-AG Jeff Sessions, and later then-Secy Nielsen all thought they could simply cancel DACA and not have to show their math. The Supreme Court did not let them get away with it.
If a government agency puts forth a rule, it has to show its math.

Imagine a rule that all cars have to have either airbags or automatic seat belts as a secondary form of safety. Then the agency, showing its math, decides that automatic seat belts (remember those?) don't work.
Read 24 tweets
This morning, the Michigan Supreme Court agreed to accept the @Umich appeal in my lawsuit against them to unseal the #TantonPapers.

On we go in the fight for transparency!
John Tanton was the mastermind behind the modern anti-immigrant movement. (If you haven't heard of him - that's exactly the what he wanted.)

His groups, the #TantonNetwork, are deeply embedded within the Trump administration.
Tanton was a white nationalist. And a eugenicist (believing white people were genetically superior to blacks and Latinos.) He started these movements to push his agenda.

If Trump is Stephen Miller's puppet, then Miller is Tanton's puppet.…
Read 6 tweets
Julie Kirchner heads white nationalist group FAIR for nearly 10 years.

Trump is elected.

FAIR feeds its people into the admin, including Kirchner.
Kirchner loses her job.

So they CREATE a new position for her. Overseeing DETAINED IMMIGRANTS.…
Julie Kirchner:

* Advocated slashing all immigration
* Wants to end birthright citizenship
* Welcomed known racists to events
* Likened immigration to "human sprawl."

Now she'll be overseeing complaints about the civil rights of immigrant detainees.…
She's part of the Tanton Network.

This is why I sued to unseal the #TantonPapers. John Tanton, the founder of Kirchner's FAIR, believed white people are genetically superior. He embraced white nationalism, and his network carries his legacy.…
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The state of the immigration courts in which we practice affect hundreds of thousands. And they've been politicized and manipulated by the likes of Stephen Miller.

So I submitted written testimony for a hearing to be held by @HouseJudiciary tomorrow. Wanted to share it.
The crisis isn't the backlog of 1 million cases.

It's the LACK OF DUE PROCESS. Take it from someone in the trenches.

It's not a court of law when judges have to meet quotas to keep their jobs. When ICE attorneys show up without a file and nothing happens to them.
The right to tell one's story is sacrosanct. Throwing people into squalor, barring them from entering, holding court in a tent - all make a mockery of due process.

Do you hear that, "Party of Law and Order?"

Read 5 tweets
White nationalists mourn the passing of their godfather, architect of the anti-immigrant movement, the guy who might as well have told Stephen Miller how to make America white again.

I've been fighting to unseal the #TantonPapers for 3 years. What don't they want us to see?
But there is some good news. Because Tanton died in July - the quarterly hate rag he launched called "The Social Contract" comes to an end.

That's one less white nationalist mouthpiece out there. Of course, one could argue it accomplished its purpose.
That being the creation of anti-immigrant language that Tanton Network people could use to push policies like the #MuslimBan, ramped up #ICERaids, criminalization of immigrants, #MPP, and the rest of the Hate Torrent spewing out of the White House.

Tanton Network infested it.
Read 8 tweets
I have deep ties to Michigan.
I also have a FOIA lawsuit pending against @UMich to unseal the #TantonPapers.

U of M wanted nearly $6400 to go through 11 boxes, and another $6400 after they were done. They also wanted 18 months to do it.…
That's why this bill is so important.

Michigan can't be a "basement dweller" when it comes to transparency.

I've been fighting to unseal the #TantonPapers, which will shed light on the origins of the anti-immigrant movement that's infected the current White House, for 3 years.
It's time to overhaul Michigan's FOIA laws.

And prevent the state from being able to contract around transparency by entering into mysterious secret agreements with shady individuals.

Read 3 tweets
#BREAKING @splcenter drops another bombshell report on Stephen Miller and his *extensive* connections with white nationalist hate group @CIS_org.

Why is this so important? Of course Stephen Miller is a white nationalist, right?…
Ramped up #ICERaids.
#TPS loss.
#DACA revocation.
#RemainInMexico protocols.
The #MuslimBan

Miller is often credited as architect of 45's immigration policies, but these policies didn't just appear in his mind overnight. He had lots of help, going back a long way.
The Center for Immigration Studies was founded by white nationalist/eugenicist John Tanton. If you follow me, you know I've been seeking to unseal the private #TantonPapers for 3 years.…
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.@BernieSanders' immigration plan is good.

It's really, really good.

Ultimately, it goes where @ewarren's plan doesn't: by respecting immigration as a labor, climate change, and foreign policy issue - and wresting it away from criminality.…
I'm a practicing immigration lawyer. Both the Sanders and Warren plans would overhaul the practice of immigration law, and in an objectively good way.

The Warren plan:…
Getting rid of the 3/10 year bars alone (which both candidates commit to) would singularly change the advice I give to the majority of my clients. Restructuring (abolishing) ICE would, too. As would creating Article I immigration courts. There's a lot to love in both plans.
Read 7 tweets
EVERYONE needs to see this.

A wire map of white supremacy in the Trump administration on immigration.

Check out the link here:
If you've ever wondered, "Where do all these horrible policies come from?" like #KidsInCages, #MuslimBan, ramped up #ICERaids, #DACA revocation, etc - you might think the evil mind of Stephen Miller.

But Miller's no immigration guru. He's had a LOT of help.
Hover over the names. Read about the connections and you'll see: we're not fighting Trump or Miller.

We're fighting a *movement.* A defined, purposeful movement that thrives on a diet of white nationalism, deplorables, and bigotry.

And we're about 40 years behind them.
Read 10 tweets
Very important news.

The @colcomfdn is THE money behind the entire anti-immigrant movement. No one has given more to these white nationalists. No one.

Without Colcom, there would be no anti-immigrant movement to speak of.
@colcomfdn The bombshell @NYTimes report from 8/14 traced the dark ideology of Colcom's founder, Cordelia Scaife May, who bankrolled the efforts of white nationalist John Tanton (whose papers I am suing to unseal) in the late 1970's.

Many of Colcom's grantees are part of the #TantonNetwork of hate groups.

Colcom funds hate, and Tiedemann Advisors did the right thing by dropping them.
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Y'all, this is a BFD.

The website in question is @vdare run by white supremacist @peterbrimelow.


Today, they goofed and it slipped out. But these are the groups informing our policy affecting MILLIONS of people of color.
The hate networks of John Tanton, who died in July, have infiltrated the Trump administration, where they've injected their sick and twisted ideologies which metastasize into things like caging brown kids for profit.

Tanton was good buddies with Vdare's Brimelow. (Shocker.)
Sound familiar? Family unification ? Chain migration? Attacking asylum?

Brimelow and Tanton were discussing this in 1995.

Check out what Tanton was thinking about 20 years before that: ending #BirthrightCitizenship
Read 7 tweets
#WhiteNationalism has become brazen and open in this administration.

But it persists with the people behind the scenes, building a wall more effective than any physical one, clothing racism not in a white Klan robe but in a black judicial one.

I'm calling for a hearing.
To people like me who punish themselves by reading the writings of racists and white nationalists, it's a very familiar refrain.

Losing our identity

Why else would cult classics like #CampoftheSaints still enjoy popularity?
It lays out the racial fear raw and unvarnished. Great to rally people to your cause, and maybe get them to light Tiki torches or shoot up a Wal-Mart on the border.

But it doesn't make true exclusionary policy.
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The expansion of #ExpeditedRemoval is a game changer.

Deportation without a hearing has been part of the law for a long time, but now, it essentially turns the entire United States into a border.

#DueProcess of law is dying a horrid death.
First: expedited removal, or ER, applied to noncitizens caught within 100 miles of the border who couldn't prove they'd been in the US for 2 weeks.

Under expanded ER, it's the whole US, and for anyone who can't prove they've been here for 2 *years*.…
If you're in ER, the ONLY way out is to claim asylum and be scheduled for a "credible fear interview," or CFI. Even those have become harder of late. Otherwise, *you just get deported.*

Add to that the family separation, and you can see: THIS IS A NIGHTMARE SCENARIO.
Read 13 tweets

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