Justin Miller

 Justin Miller is a writing fellow for The American Prospect.

Recent Articles

Gary Cohn: Trickle Downer of the Week

In which Goldman Sachs deregulates itself—and tells you it’s for your own good. 

AP/FEREX Gary Cohn, Trump's head of the National Economic Council, in the lobby of Trump Tower. trickle-downers.jpg L ast Friday, Donald Trump signed two dramatic—albeit largely symbolic—executive orders that outlined his plans to pick apart Dodd-Frank financial regulations and review Obama’s conflict-of-interest rule that require retirement advisors to act in their clients’ best interest. The move is unsurprising (Trump campaigned against Dodd-Frank) but the president’s rationale for rolling it back borders on the comically absurd. In a room full of billionaire business leaders, Trump said, “We expect to be cutting a lot out of Dodd-Frank, because frankly I have so many people, friends of mine, that have nice businesses and they can’t borrow money. They just can’t get any money because the banks just won’t let them borrow because of the rules and regulations in Dodd-Frank.” The man behind this deregulatory scheme is Gary Cohn, the former chief operating officer at Goldman Sachs and...

Veterans of Obama’s Labor Department Look Ahead in Anguish

The Department of Labor was the regulatory hub for advancing Obama’s second-term agenda. Trump endangers all of that. 

Ed Brown/Wikimedia Commons The Frances Perkins Building headquarters of the U.S. Department of Labor in Washington, D.C. T he Department of Labor during President Obama’s second term was the epicenter of a domestic policy agenda aimed at helping working families. Shepherding that agenda in the face of entrenched opposition from congressional Republicans and well-funded business groups was Labor Secretary Tom Perez. With muscular wonkery, he and his top labor lieutenants successfully implemented an impressive array of rules and regulations that have come, in part, to define Obama’s legacy. They implemented executive orders that, by leveraging the federal government’s contracting power, required federal contractors to pay a minimum wage of $10.10 an hour, provide paid sick leave, and disclose past labor law violations. They promulgated a new overtime rule that doubled the salary threshold for eligibility—a powerful tool aimed at lifting pay for millions of moderate-income workers. They...

Republican Governors: Trickle Downers of the Week

GOP leaders in the states are using regressive tax policy to address massive revenue shortfalls. 

(Photo: AP/Orlin Wagner) Gov. Sam Brownback waves to guests before delivering his state of the state address to a joint session of the Kansas legislature in Topeka, Kansas in early January. O ver the last couple weeks, state governors around the country have unveiled their budget proposals amid political tumult. Not only are state governments unclear how Trump and the GOP Congress may impact their funding, but nearly 40 states are facing some level of short-term, or more structural long-term, revenue shortfall in the upcoming fiscal year. While the factors behind these deficits vary, many are driven by aggressive, and regressive, tax cuts of yesteryear, which a number of GOP-controlled states endeavored to offset by cuts to schools and other social essentials. Confronted by deficits that their own cuts created, many Republican governors are now calling for further cuts to state education spending and other critical services. Even more boldly, they continue to call for further...

Trump’s Immigration Crackdown is Dangerous for Workers (Not Just Immigrants)

With more aggressive immigration enforcement and less stringent labor law enforcement on the horizon, labor advocates are concerned about the undocumented workforce.

(Photo: AP/Ed Andrieski) Relatives and supporters, left, of Swift & Co. meat processing plant workers, face off with Immigration Police at the entrance of a Swift & Co. meat processing plant, during a raid in Greeley, Colo., Dec. 12, 2006. T he Trump administration’s dramatic rollout of executive actions last week was the opening act of what is certain to be an aggressive crackdown on unauthorized immigration. To make good on his campaign promise to deport millions of “criminal” undocumented immigrants, Trump issued an executive order that directs Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents to broaden the definition of “criminal” and focus deportation efforts not only on those who have been convicted, but also those who have been charged, or “have committed acts that constitute a chargeable criminal offense”—which could include immigration crimes like illegal entry. Trump is tripling the number of agents in the ICE Enforcement and Removal Operations office and giving them broad...