Senate Approves Trump's Homeland Security Pick

Senate Advances Kirstjen Nielsen's Nomination for DHS Secretary Post

The Senate on Tuesday confirmed Deputy White House chief of staff Kirstjen Nielsen as President Donald Trump's choice to lead the Department of Homeland Security. She was a deputy to former head John Kelly, who became head of the White House office in July. During the George W. Bush administration, she served as special assistant to the president for homeland security and senior director for prevention, preparedness and response on the White House Homeland Security Council.

With more than a third of the Senate voting against her, Nielsen's margin of approval was the narrowest ever for the confirmation of a DHS secretary. Ms. Nielsen will be charged with leading the department at a critical time.

"I look forward to working closely with Kirstjen and the Department to combat the most critical homeland security challenges facing the United States, including securing our borders, defending against cyber threats, enforcing immigration laws, counterterrorism and more".

Ten Democrats joined in the vote to confirm Nielsen on December 5, with no Republicans voting against. Maggie Hassan (D-N.H.), who voted against confirming Nielsen. Bush. endorsed Nielsen's nomination.

"Congratulations to Kirstjen Nielsen on becoming the sixth Secretary of Homeland Security", acting secretary Elaine Duke said in a statement Tuesday.

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. It is hard to imagine how the head of one of our federal government's executive departments, who all report to the president, can ever be "free from political interference from the White House".


And in a statement released after the Senate confirmed Nielsen, Sen.

Another Democrat who voted no, Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) in November that recipients of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program would not be a priority for deportation in her department. Nielsen said the federal government should adjust its modeling and preparation for dealing with weather events related to climate changes, but refused to acknowledge the alleged human contributions to those changes.

Nielsen has never held the top job at a federal agency or a private-sector company. During her confirmation hearing, she told senators she learned key lessons about emergency management by having a front-row seat to the botched response to Hurricane Katrina.

Despite increasing prominence in the national conversation, cybersecurity was a secondary topic during Nielsen's confirmation hearing.

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.

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