Senate Confirms Kirstjen Nielsen as DHS Secretary

Senate Confirms Kirstjen Nielsen as DHS Secretary

Senate Confirms Kirstjen Nielsen as DHS Secretary

The Senate voted Tuesday to confirm Kirstjen Nielsen as the next secretary of the Department of Homeland Security.

"Not only does Nielsen's prior experience run contrary to Trump's populist-nationalist agenda on immigration, but her current views on illegal immigration and amnesty for illegal aliens ignore the president's pro-American agenda", Breitbart stated Tuesday.

She previously served as chief of staff to former DHS Secretary John Kelly, who now serves as the White House chief of staff, from January through July and worked at the department's Transportation and Security Administration. They also cited concerns about possible White House interference in a recent DHS decision to send home thousands of Nicaraguans and Haitians long granted US protection.

The key Cabinet position, created after the terror attacks of September 11, 2001, oversees a myriad of agencies tasked with protecting the United States and managing immigration and customs. Nielsen was the second woman to head this ministry after Janet Napolitano, who was in office from 2009 to 2013.

"It has been an honor to serve as the Department's Acting Secretary, and I look forward to working alongside Ms. Nielsen as her deputy as we continue to carry out the DHS mission of safeguarding the American people, our homeland, and our values", she said in a statement. The Senate had confirmed Duke for that position on April 4 by a vote of 85-14.

USA Today reported last month that during her confirmation hearing, Nielsen seemed to depart from Trump's signature campaign proposal to build a wall along the U.S.

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Senate Majority Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., called Nielsen a qualified candidate with the talent and experience to succeed.

Sen. Kamala Harris (D., Calif.) criticized Nielsen for playing a role in the development of Trump's travel ban and a failure to acknowledge how humans contribute to climate change, according to the AP.

But both Kelly and Nielsen have said that a wall on the entire 3,200 kilometres frontier with Mexico would be inappropriate, and that other measures, including electronic monitoring, would be required as well.

Still, Nielsen received strong endorsements from Republicans, in and out of Congress, including two former DHS secretaries: Tom Ridge and Michael Chertoff.

We have not seen any report about Nielsen's views on the Trump administration's position on whether "Dreamers", as those who qualified for USA residency under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program are often called, should be allowed to stay in the United States.

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