The Progressive


A project of Common Dreams

For Immediate Release

ACLU Comment on Japanese Internment, Muslim Registry Comments from Trump Backer


A prominent backer of Donald Trump, Carl Higbie, recently cited the Japanese-American internment camps created during World War II as precedent for reviving a discredited and disbanded Bush-era Muslim immigrant registry and interview program called NSEERS.

Cecillia Wang, director of the American Civil Liberties Union's Immigrants' Rights Project, said:

"President-elect Trump must immediately disavow his surrogate who cited the racist internment of Japanese-Americans during World War II as support for a program to register and interview Muslim immigrants living in the United States. The ACLU fought the internment of Japanese-Americans all the way to the Supreme Court, and in decades since, the internment has been discredited as a shameful chapter of our history, including by President Ronald Reagan, who called it 'a great injustice' and apologized on behalf of all Americans. If the Trump administration proceeds to discriminate against our Muslim neighbors, families, and friends, we will sue."

Higbie was a spokesman for Great America PAC, an independent fund-raising committee that backed Trump's campaign.

This statement is online here:

The ACLU released its analysis of candidate Trump's policy proposals in July, including the surveillance of Muslims, which can be found at:

More information about the ACLU's work on Muslim discrimination is available at:

More information about the ACLU's Japanese interment work is available at:

The American Civil Liberties Union was founded in 1920 and is our nation's guardian of liberty. The ACLU works in the courts, legislatures and communities to defend and preserve the individual rights and liberties guaranteed to all people in this country by the Constitution and laws of the United States.

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