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Tag: Homeland Security Secretary

Ex-Homeland Security Secretary Nielsen Reveals Why She Resigned from Trump Administration

Former Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen.

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

President Trump’s third Homeland Security secretary Kirstjen Nielsen revealed Tuesday why she resigned from the department in April: Trump did not like the word “no.”

“What led me to resign is there were a lot of things that there were those in the administration who thought that we should do, and… it became clear that saying no and refusing to do it myself was not going to be enough,” Nielsen in an interview with PBS NewsHour’s Amna Nawaz at Fortune’s Most Powerful Women Summit in Washington D.C.

Nielsen’s replacement in April, Kevin McAleenan, is resigning at the end of the month as Trump looks for a fifth Homeland Security secretary in less than three years.

When pressed about the controversial child separation policy, Nielsen defended her actions, saying her job was to “enforce the law, not to separate families.”

But Nielsen admitted the policy was enacted before determining how to reunite the migrant families.

“What I regret is that we haven’t solved it, and what I regret was that that information flow and coordination to quickly reunite the families was clearly not in place and that’s why the practice was stopped through an executive order,” Nielsen said.

Trump’s purported top picks for the next Homeland Security secretary – Mark Morgan, acting CBP commissioner, or Ken Cuccinelli, acting head of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services – are ineligible by a federal law governing agency succession, White House officials told the president.

Trump’s Search for Fifth Homeland Security Secretary Hits Snag

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

President Trump’s search for a fifth Homeland Security secretary in less than three years just hit a major snag.

Two of his purported top picks are ineligible by a federal law governing agency succession, White House officials told Trump, according to reports in Politico and The Wall Street Journal.

Trump was gunning for Mark Morgan, acting CBP commissioner, or Ken Cuccinelli, acting head of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.

Immigration hawks have endorsed Cuccinelli.

White House officials gave Trump a list of other potential candidates who could take over as DHS head after acting Secretary Kevin McAleenan leaves at the end of the month. Among the names are DHS Assistant Secretary Chad Wolf, a former chief of staff of ousted DHS Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen, and Transportation Security Administration chief David Pekoske.

Trump has been considering Wolf to be acting secretary, Politico reports. But Wolf’s position on immigration has been considered weak.

Leading Homeland Security has been no easy task because Trump has demanded a secretary whose focus is clearly on immigration, which is only one part of the multi-faceted agency.

Trump Administration Mulls Rick Perry for Top Homeland Security Job

Rick Perry

Rick Perry

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The Trump administration is considering replacing John Kelly at Homeland Security with Energy Secretary Rick Perry.

Three people family with the deliberations told Bloomberg that Perry is among an unknown number of potential candidates for the position, which was abandoned by Kelly when he became the White House chief of staff Monday. 

What unclear is whether Perry wants the job.

“Secretary Perry is focused on the important mission of the Department of Energy. He’s honored to be mentioned, but he loves what he’s doing,” said Robert Haus, director of public affairs at the department.

Some of Trump’s administration favor Rep. Michael McCaul, a Texas Republican, for the job.

Perry, 67, has a lot of experience with border issues during his nearly 15 years as governor of Texas, but questions have been raised about whether he and the president agree on immigration policies.

Other Stories of Interest

Who Will Replace John Kelly as Homeland Security Secretary? Here Are 4 Possible Candidates

Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly

Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

After President Trump tapped Gen. John Kelly as the new White House chief of staff, speculation has been mounting about who will replace him as head of Homeland Security.

For now, Deputy Secretary of DHS Elaine Duke, is filling the role as acting secretary.

So who could become the next Homeland Security secretary?

According to an examination of several news stories, here are the possible contenders for the high-profile position:

  • Rep. Michael McCaul, R-Tex.
  • Attorney General Jeff Sessions
  • Thomas Homan, acting director of ICE
  • White House Homeland Security Adviser Tom Bossert

Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson Offers ‘Fresh Start’ With Controversial Deportation Program

Jeh JohnsonSteve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

In yet another sign that the Obama administration is planning to revise its immigration-enforcement priorities, Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson said a controversial deportation program needs a “fresh start,” the Washington Post reports.

Johnson said the program, Secure Communities, needs some revision but should not be scrapped.

The program, which started during President George W. Bush’s tenure, seeks to identify undocumented immigrants by teaming up local law enforcement with federal authorities.

The program has come under fire by immigrant advocates who say undocumented immigrants with minor no prior criminal record were being arrested.

President Obama Praises Newly Confirmed Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

President Obama lauded new Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson as “a strong leader” who will “play a leading role in our efforts to protect the homeland against terrorist attacks.”

The statement follows Monday’s Senate confirmation of Johnson, a former general counsel at the Pentagon.

The president’s full statement:

“I am pleased the Senate has confirmed Jeh Johnson as our next Secretary of Homeland Security with broad bipartisan support.

“In Jeh, our dedicated homeland security professionals will have a strong leader with a deep understanding of the threats we face and a proven ability to work across agencies and complex organizations to keep America secure. Jeh has been a critical member of my national security team, and he helped to shape some of our most successful national security policies and strategies.

“As Secretary of Homeland Security, Jeh will play a leading role in our efforts to protect the homeland against terrorist attacks, adapt to changing threats, stay prepared for natural disasters, strengthen our border security, and make our immigration system fairer — while upholding the values, civil liberties, and laws that make America great.

“I look forward to Jeh’s counsel and sound judgment for years to come.”

Homeland Security Nominee Faces Tough Questions During Hearing

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Jeh Johnson is about to be in the crosshairs of combative Republican senators.

President Obama’s pick for Homeland Security secretary will soon face a confirmation hearing in which he’ll likely be grilled over his role in drone strikes, the National Journal reports.

Johnson also faces tough questions about immigration, terrorism and Guantanamo Bay.

“I have a long list of questions that have been sent to him,” he told National Journal. “So we are real early in the stage,” Sen. Tom Coburn, R-Okla., told the National Journal.

Janet Napolitano’s Leadership at Homeland Security Expires at End of Today

Janet Napolitano/file photo

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano, who served longer than either of her two predecessors, will step down at the end of today to become the first female president of the University of California.

“It’s challenging; it’s very rewarding. Because the things you do really impact human lives,” she said in an interview with NBC News on Thursday at the department’s headquarters in Washington.

Beginning Saturday, new interim Homeland Security Secretary Randy Beers will take over until President Obama decides on a predecessor.

Obama sought out Napolitano, who served six years as governor of Arizona.

Napolitano is credited with getting rid of the color-coded threat system and introducing body scanners and airport pat-downs, NBC News reported.

She oversaw more than 300 natural disasters and relentless terrorism threats.

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