A key member of Donald Trump’s transition team has said that the nascent Trump administration is already weighing a plan to launch a registry for immigrants and visitors from Muslim countries.
Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach, who is considered one of Trump’s top advisers and also a possible candidate for attorney general, told Reuters that the president-elect’s advisers have discussed preparing a policy proposal for a registry.
A spokesperson for Kobach did not respond to a request for further details.
Trump said a year ago that he would support the creation of a database to register Muslims, telling NBC News that he “would certainly implement that — absolutely.”
Kobach helped design a similar program after the 9/11 terrorist attacks while serving under former president George W. Bush, Reuters reported. That program, known as the National Security Entry-Exit Registration System, required people from countries deemed “higher risk” to undergo interrogations and fingerprinting upon arrival. Some men were also expected to follow a parole-like system by periodically checking in with local authorities. The program, which civil rights groups said targeted Muslims, was dissolved in 2011.
Jonathan Greenblatt, the CEO of the Anti-Defamation League, said that a registry for Muslims would almost certainly be unconstitutional. “The day they create a Muslim registry is the day I register as a Muslim,” he added.