Former White House Chief of Staff John Kelly recently joined the board of directors for Caliburn International, a company which operates shelters for unaccompanied migrant children picked up at the border between Mexico and the United States, as The Inquisitr detailed. Kelly, prior to joining the Trump administration, served on the board of advisors for DC Capital Partners, Caliburn’s parent company.
Kelly now faces a barrage of criticism, including ethics complaints, alleging that he is now in a position to profit off of the child separation policy that he helped implement during his time with the Trump administration, as Business Insider reports. At the forefront of the backlash was Massachusetts Senator and Democratic presidential hopeful Elizabeth Warren.
“John Kelly oversaw many of the Trump Admin’s most morally repugnant immigration policies,” she said in a tweet. “Now he could be making big bucks serving on the Board of a company that’s profiting from the same cruel plans he put in place. This is corruption at its absolute worst.”
During Kelly’s time with the administration, immigration enforcement ramped up markedly, including a severe jump in the average amount of time migrant children would be held in custody when not accompanied by a parent.
Former White House chief of staff John Kelly joins the board of directors for the parent company of Comprehensive Health Services, which operates shelters for unaccompanied migrant children https://t.co/teXkUMxEkF pic.twitter.com/l36Uapm7YJ— CNN Breaking News (@cnnbrk) May 3, 2019
Government ethics rules keep Kelly or other administration officials from working as lobbyists for five years after leaving their jobs, but there is currently no rule saying that Kelly can’t do outside work such as serve on the board of a company like Caliburn, provided that his duties do not include lobbying on behalf of the company.
Warren, in another tweet, advocated for a law that would prohibit moves like Kelly’s, where former administration officials are able to join or otherwise work with companies that they themselves were responsible for giving government contracts.
“My plan to #EndCorruptionNow would stop senior govt officials from leaving & immediately getting paid by firms they gave contracts to. I’ll keep fighting to make that law. In the meantime, Kelly should try & save what’s left of his reputation by resigning from Caliburn’s board,” she said.
Kelly was the first Trump administration official to reveal the then-unannounced policy under consideration wherein families would be separated upon entering the United States. He made the announcement in a 2017 interview prior to becoming White House chief of staff when he was still the Secretary of Homeland Security.
In that interview, Kelly advocated for “almost anything to deter the people from Central America to getting on this very, very dangerous network that brings them up through Mexico into the United States.”