These agents may have gotten a lift in the dwindling days of Mr. Trump’s administration as Trump loyalists tried to codify the influence of these unions. The day before Mr Biden’s inauguration, union leaders signed a working agreement with Kenneth T. Cuccinelli II, a hardline immigration officer and deputy secretary of the Department of Homeland Security, requiring the ICE’s political leadership to consult the union on policy decisions.
Under Federal lawAn agency boss has 30 days to terminate such an agreement after it is signed. Then it comes into force. If the deal is in place, it could undercut Mr Biden’s instructions to law enforcement officials, including guidelines that came into effect on Monday requiring ICE officers to focus arrests on violent criminals.
Arizona became the second state to suing Mr Biden’s deportation ban on Wednesday after Republican Attorney General Mark Brnovich cited in court another agreement that Mr Cuccinelli signed that required the department to provide a notice prior to enacting immigration policy.
“You won’t be able to get people to change their ingrained beliefs,” Stephen Miller, the architect of Mr. Trump’s anti-immigration agenda, said of many career officials in the Department of Homeland Security. “They will make it painfully clear to the politicians what the consequences will be if their advice is not followed.” Mr Miller, a staunch defense attorney for Mr Trump, publicly criticized Mr Biden’s policies even before his inauguration.
The emergence of encouraged resistance within the Biden government is not confined to Homeland Security. Bags of government employees who are loyal to Mr. Trump and his agenda remain anchored in other parts of the bureaucracy.
The new Washington
Andrew Veprek, an ally of Mr. Miller and once deputy assistant secretary of state for refugees and migration, has been replaced by a veteran in the administration of President Barack Obama. But Mr Veprek, a professional Foreign Service official, has returned to the Foreign Office.
Michael Ellis, a Trump loyalist, was named the National Security Agency’s best lawyer in the days leading up to Mr. Biden’s inauguration. He was taken on administrative leave while investigating his appointment but remains an employee of the Agency. And there are still lawyers at the Justice Department who have defended many of Mr Trump’s policies, including family separation on the border.