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Tag: Ken Cuccinelli

Chad Wolf Becomes 5th Homeland Security Leader under President Trump

Acting Homeland Security Secretary Chad Wolf.

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

The Department of Homeland Security has its fifth leader under President Trump with the appointment of Chad Wolf as acting secretary.

After Wolf was sworn in Thursday, he named immigration hard-liner and acting head of ICE Ken Cuccinelli as his deputy.

Wolf replaces acting Homeland Security Secretary Kevin McAleenan, who resigned earlier this month after leading the agency for about six months.

Wolf served as chief of staff under former Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen.

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 Plans to Name Chad Wolf As Fifth Homeland Security Secretary in Less Than 3 Years

Chad Wolf

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

President Trump plans to name Chad Wolf as the next acting Homeland Security secretary, Politico reports.

Wolf, the acting undersecretary for strategy at Homeland Security and former chief of staff to then-Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen, would replace Kevin McAleenan, who was scheduled to resign Thursday but agreed to stay on to create a smooth transition in leadership.

That would make Wolf the fifth Homeland Security secretary in less than three years under Trump.

The White House was trying to find a loophole in a federal law to appoint immigration hardliner Ken Cuccinelli. But Republican senators warned the president against making the appointment.

Officials told Politico that Trump has some concerns about Wolf, including that he’s not strong enough on immigration. But Wolf was involved in the migrant family separation policy at the border.

Still, a senior administration official told Politico that Wolf would be “an outstanding pick by the President.”

“Chad is uniquely qualified to lead the Department and he’s widely respected within DHS and the interagency community for his experience and vision,” the official said.

Republican Senators to Trump: Don’t Appoint Immigration Hardliner to Lead Homeland Security

Ken Cuccinelli

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

Republican senators are warning President Trump not to exploit a potential loophole in a federal law to appoint an immigration hardliner to lead Homeland Security.

As Tickle the Wire reported Wednesday, the White House is looking for ways to bypass the Federal Vacancies Act that limits who can take over cabinet-level positions. Trump and immigration hardliners appear to favor Ken Cuccinelli to become the fifth Homeland Security director in less than three years.

As acting head of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, Cuccinelli would not be eligible unless the administration found a loophole that involves appointing him to assistant secretary of Homeland Security. Doing so would risk a protracted legal battle at a time when Homeland Security needs a permanent leader.

“The White House would be well advised to consult with the Senate and senators before they take any decisive action that might be embarrassing to Mr. Cuccinelli or to the White House itself,” said Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas), according to Politico.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell also said he does not like the idea.

Cuccinelli, one of the president’s top lieutenants as an immigration hardliner, has not won over Republicans because he once led the Senate Conservatives Fund, a group that was critical of the GOP establishment.

On Wednesday, Cuccinelli told lawmakers he ended a program that temporarily protected immigrants from deportation if they’re battling life-threatening illnesses in the U.S.

Homeland Security Secretary Kevin McAleenan is scheduled to resign today.

White House Explores Loophole to Appoint Immigration Hardliner to Acting Secretary of Homeland Security

Ken Cuccinelli

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

Immigration hardliners have been gunning for Ken Cuccinelli as acting secretary of Homeland Security, but a federal law appeared to make the appointment impossible.

The White House may have found a way to bypass the federal Vacancies Act, which limits who can take over cabinet-level positions.

Under the law, the acting official is required to be the next in the line of succession, have served 90 days under the previous secretary or receive Senate approval.

As acting head of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, Cuccinelli would not be eligible.

One possible loophole is for Trump to appoint Cuccinelli to the vacant position of assistant secretary of the Countering Weapons of Mass Destruction Office and then tap him to be the acting secretary of Homeland Security, The New York Times reports.

Trump’s fourth acting Homeland Security secretary in less than three years is Kevin K. McAleenan, who is retiring at the end of the month.

Trump has demanded loyalty from that position, and he’s desired a secretary whose man focus is on immigration, not terrorism.

President Trump Looking for Fifth Homeland Security Secretary Since Taking Office

Homeland Security helicopter, via Homeland Security.

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

Job security is not exactly a perk in the top job at the Department of Homeland Security.

Kevin McAleenan was the fourth person to hold the job of Homeland Security secretary since Donald Trump became president three years ago. His resignation Friday means the agency that protects the nation against terrorism, cyberattacks, illegal immigrant natural disasters and other threats needs another leader.

The two leading candidates to replace McAleenan are Mark Morgan, acting CBP commissioner, and Ken Cuccinelli, acting head of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, according to The Wall Street Journal, which notes the list of potential candidates may expand.

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.

Enter Morgan and Cuccinelli. Their rhetoric on immigration matches the president’s, so they are more likely to be loyal.

“The rhetoric coming from the top of DHS will likely now more closely match the president,” Ali Noorani, executive director of the National Immigration Forum, a nonprofit that supports liberalized immigration legislation, told The Wall Street Journal.