Friday, October 13, 2017
Here is some DHS news. President Trump said on Wednesday that he intended to name Kirstjen Nielsen, a top White House aide, to lead the Department of Homeland Security, elevating a former homeland security official in the George W. Bush administration who has lately worked to impose order in Mr. Trump’s chaotic West Wing.
Mr. Trump announced his choice in a statement that noted Ms. Nielsen’s “extensive professional experience in the areas of homeland security policy and strategy, cybersecurity, critical infrastructure and emergency management.” She is the first nominee for the homeland security post who had served in the department, according to the statement. President Trump said little about Nielsen's immigration experience. Now Chief of Staff to the President, John Kelly was Trump's first DHS Secretary; Elaine Duke has served as the interim after Kelly's move to the White House.
If confirmed, Ms. Nielsen would replace John F. Kelly, who was homeland security secretary until he left in July to serve as the White House chief of staff and bring discipline and direction to a West Wing plagued by disorganization and infighting. Mr. Kelly had drafted Ms. Nielsen to be his chief of staff at the Homeland Security department, and when the president plucked him for the White House, he brought her as his No. 2.
A cybersecurity expert, Nielsen has had limited immigration exposure. As observed by Dara Lind at Vox, "Nielsen — who isn’t familiar to advocates on either side of the immigration issue — apparently satisfied [Stephen] Miller’s [senior advisor on policy to the President] concerns, indicating she’s seen as a reliable executor of the White House’s desires."