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Extremist ex-adviser drives ‘anti-white racism’ plan for Trump wi

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The anti-immigration extremist, white nationalist and former Trump White House adviser Stephen Miller is helping drive a plan to tackle supposed “anti-white racism” if Donald Trump returns to power next year, Axios reported.

“Longtime aides and allies … have been laying legal groundwork with a flurry of lawsuits and legal complaints – some of which have been successful,” Axios said on Monday.

Should Trump return to power, Axios said, Miller and other aides plan to “dramatically change the government’s interpretation of civil rights-era laws to focus on ‘anti-white racism’ rather than discrimination against people of colour”.

Such an effort would involve “eliminating or upending” programmes meant to counter racism against non-white groups.

The US supreme court, dominated 6-3 by rightwing justices after Trump installed three, recently boosted such efforts by ruling against race-based affirmative action in college admissions.

America First Legal, a group founded by Miller and described by him as the right’s “long-awaited answer” to the American Civil Liberties Union, is helping drive plans for a second Trump term, Axios said.

In 2021, an AFL suit blocked implementation of a $29bn Covid-era Small Business Administration programme that prioritised helping restaurants owned by women, veterans and people from socially and economically disadvantaged groups.

Miller called that ruling “the first, but crucial, step towards ending government-sponsored racial discrimination”.

Recent AFL lawsuits include one against CBS and Paramount alleging discrimination against a white, straight man who wrote for the show Seal Team, and a civil rights complaint against the NFL over the “Rooney Rule”, which says at least two minority candidates must be interviewed for vacant top positions.

Reports of extremist groups planning for a second Trump presidency are common, not least around Project 2025, a blueprint for transition and legislative priorities prepared by the Heritage Foundation, a hard-right Washington thinktank.

Trump’s spokesperson, Steven Cheung, told Axios: “As President Trump has said, all staff, offices, and initiatives connected to [Joe] Biden’s un-American policy will be immediately terminated.”

Throughout Trump’s term in office, Miller was a close adviser and speechwriter – though one of the 45th president’s less successful TV surrogates, ridiculed for using “spray-on hair”.

Controversies were numerous. Among them were reported advocacy for blowing up migrants with drones (which Miller denied); for sending 250,000 US troops to the southern border; and for beheading an Isis leader, dipping the head in pig’s blood and “parad[ing] it around to warn other terrorists” (Miller denied it and called the source of the story, the former defense secretary Mark Esper, a “moron”).

In 2019, after Miller was discovered to have touted white nationalist articles and books, 55 civil rights groups wrote to Trump, protesting: “Stephen Miller has stoked bigotry, hate and division with his extreme political rhetoric and policies throughout his career. The recent exposure of his deep-seated racism provides further proof that he is unfit to serve and should immediately leave his post.”

On Monday, Cedric Richmond, co-chair of Biden’s re-election campaign, said: “It’s not like Donald Trump has been hiding his racism … [but] he’s making it clear that if he wins in November, he’ll turn his racist record into official government policy … It’s up to us to stop him.”

Despite his legal advocacy in the cause of eradicating “anti-white racism”, Miller is not himself a lawyer.

Ty Cobb, a former Trump White House lawyer, recently told the Guardian those close to the former president were now “looking for lawyers who worship Trump and will do his bidding. Trump is looking to Miller to pick people who will be more loyal to Trump than the rule of law.”

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