Homeland Security chief Nielsen is out – POLITICO
Trump said Friday that his administration sought to “go in a tougher direction“ with the ICE role, but the White House has not announced a new nominee.
A senior administration official aligned with Nielsen said the White House had summoned her to a meeting with the understanding that she would be required to explain the rising arrests on the southwest border. The official said Nielsen didn’t want to plead to maintain her role and chose to resign instead.
Nielsen’s departure, coupled with the decision to abandon Vitiello’s nomination, leaves DHS thin at the leadership level — even as Trump and other officials warn that illegal immigration has reached crisis levels. With McAleenan elevated to acting secretary, Deputy Commissioner Robert Perez of U.S. Customs and Border Protection will probably take over at that agency.
“The system’s at a breaking point,” one congressional aide said. “I’m not sure how adding more chaos and throwing more fuel to the fire is going to be helpful.”