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David Clarke Says He's Joining The Trump Administration - Here's Why That's Worrying

He has a history of controversy.

18/05/2017 17:08 BST

There was outcry on Wednesday night after it emerged that a controversial US sheriff is reportedly to take up a position in the Department of Homeland Security.

David Clarke, Milwaukee’s stetson-wearing county sheriff, said he would be joining Donald Trump’s administration as an intermediary between federal government and local and state law enforcement.

The department has not yet confirmed his appointment.

MIKE THEILER via Getty Images
Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke is apparently joining the Department of Homeland Security

Clarke, who says he will be assistant secretary for the Department of Homeland Security, acted as a surrogate for Trump during the presidential campaign and has built a large online following thanks to his outspoken postings on social media.

The news of his appointment caused consternation among many, who have pointed to his track record of controversial comments, as well as recent scandals surrounding his work.

We’ve rounded up some of Clarke’s most controversial moments...

A string of people, including a newborn baby, have died since April at a prison he runs

Four people, including a newborn baby, have died at the Milwaukee County Jail since April.

One man, a 38-year-old with mental health issues, died of “profound dehydration.”

For a facility with a population cap of 960 that previously averaged a couple of deaths per year, the string of deaths is concerning.

Read the full story here.

He compared Black Lives Matter to the KKK

Clarke has repeatedly referred to the activist movement as “Black Lies Matter”.

In an interview with Accuracy In Media, he said BLM “doesn’t care any more about the lives of black people than the Ku Klux Klan”.

He added: “Black Lives Matter, which I have renamed ‘Black Lies’ L-I-E-S Matter, it’s nothing more than an astroturf operation, it’s just the latest shallow disguised, confederation if you will, of community organisers and leftists that specialise in fostering disorganisation and rebellion in ghettos and other struggling areas throughout the United States of America.”

He also reckons they’ll join forces with the Islamic State...

 

He said it was ‘pitchforks and torches time’ over ‘corruption’ 

He doesn’t think police brutality exists in the US

According to the Milwaukee Wisconsin Journal Sentinel, in 2015, Clarke told Fox & Friends: “There is no police brutality in America. We ended that back in the Sixties.”

He also cited a “new Harvard study” which he claimed “shows that there is no racism in the hearts of police officers”. He was, however, unable to provide any citation for this “study”.

According to Mapping Police Violence, police killed at least 1,152 people in the United States from January 1 to December 15 in that year.

He wants to turn local sheriffs into immigration officers

Thousands of people took to the streets of Milwaukee to protest Clarke’s radical proposal earlier this year.

Clarke told the Guardian he wanted local law enforcers to act as immigration agents in apprehending undocumented individuals who committed even basic misdemeanours.

ERIC THAYER / Reuters
Donald Trump with Clarke during the 2016 presidential campaign

He really, really doesn’t like protests

On anti-Trump protesters: “These people are like petulant children stomping their feet with these child-like nursery rhyme slogans.”

Also on anti-Trump protesters: “These are anarchists, these are the ones that we’ve been putting up with, the cop haters, for a long time.”

On the Women’s March: “An absolute freak show.”

He thinks African American people sell drugs because they are ‘lazy’ and ‘morally bankrupt’

According to the Milwaukee Wisconsin Journal Sentinel, Clarke said: “Let me tell you why blacks sell drugs and involve themselves in criminal behavior instead of a more socially acceptable lifestyle — because they’re uneducated, they’re lazy, and they’re morally bankrupt,”