Julie L. Myers

From SourceWatch
Jump to: navigation, search

Julie Lyn Myers is the assistant secretary of homeland security for U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).[1] From Kansas, she was nominated February 10, 2006, by President George W. Bush. Myers replaced Michael J. Garcia, who resigned. Myers was appointed to the Bureau on January 4, 2006, by President Bush in a recess appointment. That recess appointment expired at the end of 2007. [2]

President Bush first nominated Myers for the position on June 30, 2005, and her nomination was sent June 30, 2005, to the U.S. Senate for confirmation. A Senate hearing with the Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs was scheduled for September 15, 2005.

At the time of her nomination on June 30, 2005, Myers was serving as Special Assistant to the President for Presidential Personnel.

Controversy

First press conference

Myers' first press conference as ICE Assistant Secretary was in San Antonio, Texas on February 3, 2006. During the event, she defended her credentials, saying "I've already handled many of the same things I'm now doing here at ICE. ... I've prosecuted immigration cases and dealt with complex narcotics violations." [2]

The press conference was noteworthy for Myers' "struggle to pronounce Nuevo Laredo," a Mexico town notorious for drug smuggling that's across the border from Laredo, Texas. [3]

More than a year later, Myers' first press briefing also became noteworthy for the fact that an ICE public affairs official had asked a question during the event, without identifying herself. "Myers called on an agency spokeswoman who was standing with about a dozen other reporters" at the briefing. "The ICE employee was told not to ask any questions, and she was verbally reprimanded after doing so." The unnamed ICE employee reportedly asked Myers a "general question about her feelings on ICE's relationships with other law enforcement agencies." [4]

Halloween costume

In 2007, Myers "apologized after awarding 'most original costume' to a Homeland Security Department employee who dressed in prison stripes, dreadlocks and dark makeup for a Halloween gathering at the agency." Myers "was part of a three-judge panel that lauded the costume, worn by a white employee. ... She also posed for a photo with him." The photos were later destroyed by the agency. [5]

Nomination referred

On October 7, 2005, the Senate, reported "unanimous-consent agreement was reached providing that when the Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs reports the nomination of Julie L. Myers, of Kansas, to be an Assistant Secretary of Homeland Security, the nomination be referred sequentially to the Committee on the Judiciary for up to 30 calendar days, provided further, that if the nomination is not reported by that time it be discharged automatically from the Committee on the Judiciary and placed on the Executive Calendar."

Also: "Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs: Committee ordered favorably reported the following business items: ... The nomination of Julie L. Myers, of Kansas, to be an Assistant Secretary of Homeland Security." [1]

Qualifications

"The Assistant Secretary for ICE is one of the few assistant secretarial positions to have qualifications spelled out for it in the law," streiff at Red State blog pointed out September 21, 2005:

"Section 442 of Public Law 107-296 which created the Department of Homeland Security required the assistant secretary responsible for border and transportation security:
"[S]hall have a minimum of 5 years professional experience in law enforcement, and a minimum of 5 years of management experience."

Not qualified

Pointing to the DHS Organization Chart, Michelle Malkin wrote September 20, 2005: "Look at the deputy Secretary Michael P. Jackson - came from private sector transportation jobs and Dept of Transportation. BTS chief Randy Beardsworth, in charge of ICE and Border Patrol, comes from the Coast Guard and was a budget planner. Where are the law enforcement backgrounds to head law enforcement agencies? And the CIS ombudsman? [Prakash I. Khatri] A longtime immigration attorney and AILA member."

"'It appears she's got a tremendous amount of experience in money laundering, in banking and the financial areas,' said Charles Showalter, president of the National Homeland Security Council, a union that represents 7,800 ICE agents, officers and support staff. 'My question is: Who the hell is going to enforce the immigration laws?'," the Washington Post reported.

Well connected

Alice S. Fisher, nominated by President Bush to head the Criminal Division, "a Latham & Watkins partner, served as a Criminal Division deputy to Michael Chertoff from 2001 to 2003. ... Fisher and Chertoff both have ties to Julie Myers, who heads the White House Personnel Office and was Chertoff's chief of staff." [2]

Cronyism and nepotism

"The Myers appointment, in the wake of FEMA's disastrous handling of the Katrina Hurricane and the resignation of its chief, Michael Brown, is raising the hackles of people on both sides of the political aisle," David Eberhart wrote in the September 25, 2005, NewsMax. "Despite the obvious résumé problems, the Bush administration is not likely to back down on the appointment."

"Witness the nomination of Julie Myers as the new head of immigration and customs enforcement at the Homeland Security Department. Though the White House attacked the diplomat Joseph Wilson for nepotism because he undertook a single pro bono intelligence mission while his wife was at the C.I.A., it thought nothing of handing this huge job to a nepotistic twofer: Ms. Myers is the niece of Gen. Richard Myers and has just married (September 17, 2005, John F. Wood), the chief of staff for the homeland security secretary, Michael Chertoff. Her qualifications for running an agency with more than 20,000 employees and a $4 billion budget include serving as an associate counsel under Kenneth W. Starr; in that job, she helped mastermind the costly and doomed prosecution of Susan McDougal, and was outwitted at every turn by the defense lawyer Mark Geragos," Frank Rich wrote in the September 25, 2005, New York Times.

"Great contacts, but 'what exactly are the 36-year-old lawyer's main credentials to solve ... dire national security problems?'" Michelle Malkin asked. "'Zip, Nada, Nil,'" answered Malkin. [3]

Note below that Myers previously worked for Chertoff at the Department of Justice.

Patriot Act "architect"

As Deputy Assistant Secretary for Money Laundering and Financial Crimes at the Department of Treasury, Myers served as "the chief architect for the National Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing Strategy, with primary responsibility for implementing the Strategy and coordinating the government's position on these issues." She was "a key policy adviser on the money laundering provisions of the USA Patriot Act [and coordinated] work on the international Financial Action Task Force (FATF) and overs[aw] the Department's evaluation of international anti-money laundering regimes of various countries. She supervise[d] the international money laundering section and narcotics policy section in the Office of Enforcement [and was] a frequent speaker on Patriot Act and other law enforcement issues." [4]

Profiles

President Bush nominated Myers on June 26, 2003, and she was confirmed by the Senate on October 17, 2003, to serve as the Assistant Secretary for Export Enforcement at the Department of Commerce. Myers was "responsible for developing and coordinating the Department's efforts to prevent, and where necessary, sanction violations of U.S. dual-use export control laws and the antiboycott provisions of the Export Administration Act." [5]

"Prior to joining the Department of Commerce, Ms. Myers served as the Chief of Staff of the Criminal Division for Assistant Attorney General Michael Chertoff at the Department of Justice. Before that, she served as the Deputy Assistant Secretary for Money Laundering and Financial Crimes at the Department of Treasury." [6]

As an Assistant United States Attorney in the Eastern District of New York, Myers "specialized in business and securities fraud cases. Many of her cases involved organized crime and money laundering issues, including the successful prosecution of associates of a Russian organized crime family who had partnered with the Colombo family in a multi-million-dollar fraud." [7]

"Before entering government service, Ms. Myers was an associate in the litigation section of Mayer, Brown & Platt. Immediately after law school, she served as a law clerk to Judge C. Arlen Beam for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit." [8]

"Myers served as an Associate Independent Counsel in the Office of Independent Counsel Kenneth W. Starr, where she worked on grand jury investigations and helped draft the office's referral to Congress on the Lewinsky investigation." [9]

"Myers is a cum laude graduate of Cornell Law School, where she served as an Editor of the Cornell Law Review. She received her B.A. from Baylor University in Texas. She is a native of Shawnee, Kansas." [10][11]

SourceWatch resources

External links

References

  1. Assistant Secretary, Julie L. Myers, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, accessed April 2008.
  2. 2.0 2.1 Hernán Rozemberg, "ICE's new boss stands up for herself," Express-News (San Antonio, Texas), February 4, 2006.
  3. Transcript: "Lou Dobbs Tonight," CNN, February 3, 2006.
  4. Nick Juliano, "Embattled immigration chief went to fake questioner at first press conference," The Raw Story, November 27, 2007.
  5. Suzanne Gamboa, "Flap Over Halloween Costume at DHS party: Homeland Security Official Apologizes for 'offensive' Outfit, Associated Press, November 5, 2007.

2003

2005

2006

2008