The Trump Administration sees another change in departmental leadership.
According to the Associated Press, “Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen resigned on Sunday amid the administration’s growing frustration and bitterness over the number of Central American families crossing the southern border, two people familiar with the decision said.”
Nielsen has been in charge of DHS since December of 2017, replacing General John Kelly.
The AP adds this “There have been persistent tensions between the White House and Nielsen almost from the moment she became secretary, after her predecessor John Kelly became the White House chief of staff in 2017. Nielsen was viewed as resistant to some of the harshest immigration measures supported by the president and his aides, particularly senior adviser Stephen Miller, both around the border and on other matters like protected status for some refugees. Once Kelly left the White House last year, Nielsen’s days appeared to be numbered. She had expected to be pushed out last November, but her exit never materialized.”
The news came via presidential tweet. Trump’s communique said the following:
Secretary of Homeland Security Kirstjen Nielsen will be leaving her position, and I would like to thank her for her service…. ….I am pleased to announce that Kevin McAleenan, the current U.S. Customs and Border Protection Commissioner, will become Acting Secretary for @DHSgov. I have confidence that Kevin will do a great job
According to a reporter for the Washington Post, several names have already been floated as a possible replacement.
Per two Republicans involved in discussions, Sec. Rick Perry is being eyed for DHS. Ken Cuccinelli also on WH radar for DHS, has boosters on right in Congress. Kobach and Bondi have had their names mentioned, but seen as unlikely.
This development will certainly result in more debate with regard to the Trump Administration’s immigration policies. Many see that this issue and the future of DHS will weigh heavily in the 2020 election.