Attorney General-designate Jeff Sessions, who is expected to be confirmed by the Senate this week, is the “intellectual godfather” of President Trump’s policies, from immigration and health care to national security and trade, the Washington Post reports. His reach extends throughout the White House, with his aides and allies accelerating Trump most dramatic moves, including the ban on refugees and citizens from seven Muslim nations that has triggered fear around the globe.
The author of many of Trump’s executive orders is senior policy adviser Stephen Miller, a Sessions confidant who was mentored by him and who spent the weekend overseeing the government’s implementation of the refugee ban. The tactician turning Trump’s agenda into law is deputy chief of staff Rick Dearborn, Sessions’s longtime chief of staff in the Senate. The mastermind behind Trump’s incendiary brand of populism is chief strategist Stephen Bannon, who, as chairman of the Breitbart website, promoted Sessions for years. Jared Kushner, the president’s son-in-law and senior adviser, considers Sessions a savant and forged a bond with the senator while orchestrating Trump’s trip last summer to Mexico City. Bannon described Sessions to the Post as “the clearinghouse for policy and philosophy” in Trump’s administration, saying he and the senator are at the center of Trump’s “pro-America movement” and the global nationalist phenomenon.