U.S. Homeland Security Secretary Nielsen resigns amid Trump anger over border

JABIN BOTSFORD  WASHINGTON POST  File		Kirstjen Nielsen

Nielsen met with Trump at the White House Sunday amid an ongoing influx of migrants at the U.S. -Mexico border that has been taxing America's immigration system and sparking frustration within the administration.

Nielsen served as DHS secretary during a tumultuous period for the department, especially as it related to her oversight of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and Customs and Border Protection (CBP) throughout President Donald Trump's quest to clamp down on illegal immigration and build a wall along the southern border.

A protégé of former White House chief of staff John Kelly, Nielsen had reportedly fallen out of favor in recent months with the president, who has been frustrated with an unprecedented flow of Central American families reaching the U.S. -Mexico border.

Once Kelly left the White House a year ago, Nielsen's days appeared to be numbered.

Trump aides had been eyeing a staff shake-up at Homeland Security and had already withdrawn the nomination for another key immigration post but Ms Nielsen's resignation came as a surprise. "Congress should do its due diligence and properly vet the next DHS Secretary".

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This is a developing story. In November it was reported that Nielsen was going to be replaced, but she continued on in her role. Trump announced Nielsen's resignation on Sunday.

First, no matter how she might have tried to temper the president or stay within shouting distance of the law, she will forever be known as the person who presided over the cruel, unconscionable family separation policy - and falsely denied there was such a policy. The people say she has always been frustrated by the difficulty getting other departments to help with the growing number of families coming crossing the border.

The housecleaning blindsided Democrats, who have intensified their criticism of Nielsen and her deputies, particularly after she and then-Attorney General Jeff Sessions chose to prosecute all adults crossing the border illegally, even though it meant separating parents from their children.

Nielsen's departure has been rumored repeatedly. She added: "The Trump Administration's increasingly toxic anti-immigrant policies were resoundingly rejected by the American people in the midterm election". And Miller's views, echoed and lauded by pundits like Fox Business Network's Lou Dobbs, have inspired repeated and sustained right-wing criticism of Nielsen throughout her tenure.

"I think what's important about that conversation is it's not that one side is right and one side is wrong", Nielsen said. Ron Johnson, R-Wis., said the government needed "steady, informed and effective leadership in the administration and in Congress to have any hope of fixing our out-of-control border security and immigration problems".

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