- Stephen Miller’s grandmother died on July 4 to complications arising from COVID-19.
- She sustained “lung and neurological damage that destroyed her will to eat and her ability to breathe well enough to sustain arousal and consciousness,” Miller’s uncle, David Glosser, wrote on Facebook.
- Miller is the man behind President Donald Trump’s polarising hard-line immigration policies.
- Glosser also thanked immigrant medical workers who helped care for his mother and other elderly people like her.
- “I wanted to make it clear the best I can that the message the Trump administration pumps out – that immigrants who come here spread death, destruction, disease, and murder – is wrong,” he told Mother Jones.
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In a social media post announcing the death of his mother on July 4, Stephen Miller’s uncle thanked medical workers who took care of her in her final years – all of whom are immigrants.
Miller, 34, is among President Donald Trump’s senior advisers and one of the far right’s rising stars. His ancestors fled persecution in what is now known as Belarus. But Miller, a long-time conservative, is now best known as the architect of the Trump administration’s “zero tolerance” immigration policy that separated families at the US-Mexico border.
His uncle doesn’t share his views. In the Facebook post, David Glosser expressed outrage at Miller after Ruth Glosser – his mother and Miller’s grandmother – died of COVID-19 complications.
“With the death of my mother, I’m angry and outraged at [Miller] directly and the administration he has devoted his energy to supporting,” David Glosser told Mother Jones.
On Facebook, Glosser described his mother as “a scholar, a social worker,” and a “pillar of the community,” who was passionate about the “careful documentation of the Glosser family and its flight from Czarist persecution in what is now Belarus to life and freedom in the USA.” Ruth also believed in education and women’s rights, Glosser wrote.
He also described her battle with COVID-19.
“She survived the acute infection but was left with lung and neurological damage that destroyed her will to eat and her ability to breathe well enough to sustain arousal and consciousness,” he said. “Over an 8-week period she gradually slipped away and died peacefully this morning.”
Glosser followed that post with a comment that thanked healthcare workers for serving elderly Americans, including his mother.
“I neglected to mention that in mum’s declining years she was lovingly cared for by health aides nurses, and doctors from India, Philippines, Mexico, Nicaragua, Haiti, Korea, El Salvador, Uganda, and Nigeria,” he wrote. “Immigrants all of them. I am indebted to them for helping us through some very difficult times. Without them there would be no one to take care of our elderly.”
The White House denied she died of COVID-19, despite her death certificate saying so
David Corn, the Washington, DC bureau chief for Mother Jones, contacted the White House for comment from Miller and was told it is “categorically false” that Ruth Glosser died of COVID-19.
“She was diagnosed with COVID in March and passed away in July so that timeline does not add up at all. His grandmother died peacefully in her sleep from old age. I would hope that you would choose not to go down this road,” an unnamed White House spokesperson said, according to Mother Jones.
Glosser disagreed. He shared his mother’s death certificate with the publication, and Corn reported that her cause of death is listed as “respiratory arrest” as a result of “COVID-19.”
Further, Glosser told Mother Jones that hiding the truth about the devastation caused by coronavirus “serves no purpose other than to obscure the need for a coherent national, scientifically based, public health response to save others from this disease.”
He added: “My mother led a long, satisfying, productive life of family and community service. She had nothing to be ashamed of, and concealing her cause of death to offer ‘privacy’ to me, our family, her hundreds of relatives and friends, does nothing to assuage our regret at her loss.”
But the White House spokesperson didn’t budge, Mother Jones reported.
“Again, this is categorically false. She had a mile [sic] case of COVID-19 in March. She was never hospitalized and made a full and quick recovery,” was the reply.
However, Glosser said that Ruth, who lived in an assisted living facility in California, may have survived a “weak case” of COVID-19, but was left frail and 20 pounds lighter.
“She lost the will to eat because of enormous fatigue, enormous confusion, and the loss of her sense of smell and taste, and her lungs continued to deteriorate,” Glosser told the news outlet. “Finally, she could not sustain a level of oxygen to remain conscious. In accordance with her living will, the oxygen was withdrawn. She basically fell asleep and died.”
The facility went on lockdown, Glosser said, so he didn’t get a chance to say goodbye to his mother.
Glosser also told Corn that he tacked on the follow-up comment about healthcare workers from a variety of foreign countries to make a political statement.
“I wanted to make it clear the best I can that the message the Trump administration pumps out – that immigrants who come here spread death, destruction, disease, and murder – is wrong. We were those people not too long ago. That’s the story of America,” he said.